EIA campaigners will be in Geneva next week for the 62nd meeting of the Standing Committee of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), from July 23-27.
The Standing Committee is an internationally important event in our calendar as its findings and recommendations can go on for discussion at the Conference of the Parties (CoP), the supreme body of the Convention, comprising all Parties, which meets every three years.
Of crucial importance to EIA’s campaigns at next week’s meeting is the submission of an allegedly independent report which could have a direct and disastrous impact on elephant populations – Decision-Making Mechanisms and Necessary Conditions for a Future Trade in African Elephant Ivory.
EIA takes strong exception to the report and has accused its authors of failing to fully comply with their terms of reference and of effectively loading the dice to produce a report clearly biased in favour of creating a global trade in ivory.
We will be actively opposing this potentially damaging report at the Standing Committee and calling for its rejection.
We will also be urging the Standing Committee to revoke the ‘Approved Buyers’ status for ivory, and calling for the closure of the domestic ivory market in China, along with a thorough investigation of the failure of China’s domestic ivory trade controls.
For tigers and other Asian big cats, EIA is calling for all operations farming tigers and other Asian big cats to be shut down and for stockpiled body parts and derivatives to be destroyed (see our press release here).
We also want China – which has the world’s greatest number of tiger farms – to terminate its ‘legal’ domestic trade in tiger and leopard skins as an indication of genuine commitment to ending the tiger trade and reducing demand.
In respect of rhino conservation, EIA is requesting the Standing Committee to commission a review of the enforcement gaps and challenges that have allowed the rhino horn trade to spiral out of control.
You can find a full summary of our recommendations to the 62nd Standing Committee here.