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Ivory bound for Egypt seized in South Sudan
Authorities Tuesday seized a half-tonne of smuggled ivory at the international airport in Juba, the capital of the conflict-ridden country of South Sudan in the Greater Horn of Africa region.
The shipment was smuggled from an unspecified neighboring country using Ethiopia Airlines and was bound for Cairo via EgyptAir, Brig. Gen. Khamis Adieng, a spokesperson for the Wildlife Ministry’s National Wildlife Service, said Wednesday.
The plane had arrived from Kenya.
The seizure came barely six months after wildlife officials burned five tonnes of ivory in South Juba on World Environment Day to show the Government’s commitment to fight poaching across the country. The destroyed ivory had been confiscated from poachers or traffickers since 2011, according the Wildlife Ministry.
Adieng said the ivory had been wrapped in sponge which made it difficult to detect but sniffer dogs and machines at the airport allowed officials to uncover it.
The seized ivory was possibly years old and bears marks which show that it was being smuggled from other countries to South Sudan, he added.
He said the government believes the traffickers work as a network with collaborators in various countries. He said South Sudanese wildlife authorities are working with neighboring countries and the airlines to end the trafficking.
Full story at www.worldbulletin.net/world/181345/ivory-bound-for-egypt-seized-in-south-sudan
#elephants #ivory #Africa #Kenya #Egypt #SouthSudan #Cairo
Image: Archive shots of Sudan ivory seizure at Juba airport in June 2016, via radiotamazuj.org ... See MoreSee Less
21 hours ago ·
Europe’s most elusive leopard is down to 1,300 surviving in the wild
By now it’s hardly news that big cats across the world have been affected by environmental changes, and their populations are shrinking in many areas, often due to human activity impacting their habitats.
Even the highly adaptable leopards have suffered, with a comprehensive study earlier this year showing that leopard populations worldwide have lost nearly three quarters of their historical range. As a species, leopards are now listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List, but there are subspecies in more dire straits.
One of these is the endangered Caucasian leopard (Panthera pardus saxicolor), a pale spotted animal native to the Caucasus region. Once abundant across its range, it’s now scarce and resides in highly sheltered and inaccessible parts of the mountainous wilderness.
Fewer than 1,300 Caucasian leopards—also known as Persian leopards—are thought to be left in the wild, with most of these surviving in Iran and Turkmenistan. A few are found in Azerbaijan, Russia, and Turkey, but precise knowledge of their numbers is extremely difficult to come by.
Full story at www.nationalgeographic.com.au/animals/europes-most-elusive-leopard-is-down-to-1300-surviving-in-t...
#leopards #Iran #Turkmenistan #Azerbaijan #Russia #Turkey
Image: Persian - or Caucasian - leopard, by Marcel Burkhard ... See MoreSee Less
22 hours ago ·
Parliament is due to debate the UK ivory trade - time for the Govt to honour its promises to ban it entirely!
The debate on the UK ivory trade will be held in Westminster Hall on Thursday, December 8 at 3pm.
The subject for the debate has been chosen by the Backbench Business Committee, following a representation made by Jeremy Lefroy.
In its manifesto for the 2015 General Election, the Conservative Party said it would ‘press for a total ban on ivory sales’. In its 2010 manifesto, it said it would ‘press for a total ban on ivory sales and the destruction of existing stockpiles’.
But on September 21 this year, the Government instead announced plans to ban the sale of ‘worked’ ivory produced since 1947. Ornaments and works of art dating prior to 1947 are classified as ‘antique’ and trade in them will be permitted. The sale or trade of raw or unworked tusks of any age is already illegal ...
... so, essentially, a little sleight of hand and no meaningful change.
EIA believes this constitutes a serious failure to deliver on a pledge twice given.
In September, Executive Director Mary Rice commented (ht.ly/mEZz306TpsW): “The only meaningful way the UK can stop contributing to the killing of elephants is to close its ivory market and in so doing show others the way forward.
“Elephants no longer have time for these kind of half-measures."
Learn more about Thursday's debate via the offical debate pack at researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/CDP-2016-0234
#Africa #elephants #ivory #antiques Theresa May Conservatives ... See MoreSee Less
23 hours ago ·