Important Ivory Trade Update


Following China’s destruction of 6 tonnes of its ivory stockpile, Hong Kong has committed to destroying 28 tonnes of seized ivory, with 1.6 tonnes being held back for ‘education purposes’.

Over the past two years, Born Free has recorded the seizure of at least 14.2 tonnes by Hong Kong law enforcement agencies and some estimate the Region’s stockpile at 33 tonnes. So this destruction goes a long way to destroying the majority of this stockpile.

Will Travers, CEO of the Born Free Foundation says; “It’s massive. The biggest destruction of illegal ivory stocks in history. Even a year ago to think that China and Hong Kong would take such decisive action would have been fantasy. Are they now set to become global leaders in the fight against the ivory trade and poaching?

Now we need to go the extra mile. Close domestic markets  – no more selling ivory. Support Africa’s conservationists and the rangers in the field to make sure they get the training, equipment and support they need to protect elephants from the poachers. Use our global intelligence-gathering machinery to infiltrate and destroy the criminal syndicates that are behind the bloody slaughter. Stop the poaching of elephants and selling of ivory funding militant and terrorist organisations determined to destabilise communities far and wide.”

In 3 weeks, the UK hosts a High Level Meeting on Illegal Wildlife Crime. What will our response be? My advice is clear. Give Africa the means to do the job. Put serious funding from our Overseas Aid Budget behind the African Elephant Action Plan and support the rangers who risk their lives daily to protect Africa’s wildlife heritage.“

Meanwhile, a coalition of non governmental organsiations have issued a call to all European Union governments to destroy their own ivory stockpiles ahead of the UK meeting in February 2014.


Alert to elephant lovers everywhere 20/01/14

China has now joined the US, Gabon, and the Philippines in recently crushing its ivory stopckpile – six tons of confiscated elephant tusks. It remains to be seen whether China’s ivory crush is a true step in the right direction for the world’s largest consumer of ivory. Publicity stunt or move toward an end to China’s domestic ivory market?

China’s crush took place in what many consider to be the epicenter of the country’s illegal ivory trade. But Hong Kong, one of China’s Special Administrative Regions, is a known consumer destination for ivory from elephants poached in Africa and is also a key transit point for ivory entering China.

It’s time for Hong Kong to destroy its ivory, too. Compassionate conservationists across the globe must make our voices heard: no more bloody ivory trade!

On the 23rd of January, next Thursday, a meeting of the Endangered Species Advisory Committee is being held in Hong Kong to discuss the option of destruction for the country’s stockpile. Let’s make sure they do the right thing. Write to:

Over the past two years, Born Free has recorded the seizure of at least 14.2 tonnes by Hong Kong law enforcement agencies and some estimate the Region’s stockpile at 33 tonnes.

Few would have imagined China would ever consider holding an ivory destruction event. But it’s been under consideration by the Hong Kong authorities for a while, since at least 2012. ‘Let’s open a museum, hold an exhibition. Give it to schools, universities and colleges’, they’ve been saying – ‘it’s educational’. Where have we heard this before?! If ivory is not on an elephant roaming wild and free it has no place on earth – not around a neck or a wrist, not on a mantelpiece and not in government reserves stashed away for a rainy day.

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