Tag Archive: Ivory


Wildlife Extra

More than 2 tonnes of ivory seized in Hong Kong

world/Asia/2013/Hong-Kong-ivory-July-2013The ivory tusks were packed in 30 sacks and covered by wooden boards in the innermost part of the container. © Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department

Seizure of 1,148 ivory tusks underscores Hong Kong’s transit role in illicit trade
July 2013-Hong Kong Customs have seized 1,148 ivory tusks weighing 2.183 tonnes. The tusks were declared as timber and concealed in a 20 foot (6 m) container that arrived on a vessel from the West African country of Togo.
Repeated large scale seizures
It was the ninth large-scale ivory seizure made in Hong Kong since 2010, with a combined weight of just over 14 tonnes. CITES has defined large-scale seizures as 500 kg or more, and typically are indicative of organized criminal activity.

Hong Kong, Malaysia, the Philippines and Viet Nam
Hong Kong, together with Malaysia, the Philippines and Viet Nam, were identified through analysis of the Elephant Trade Information System (ETIS) database as the main transit points for ivory arriving in Asia from Africa before onward distribution to the major markets in Thailand and China. Collectively, they have made or been implicated in 21 (62%) of the 34 large-scale ivory seizures made between 2009 and 2011, totalling 41.1 tonnes of ivory.

ETIS is the world’s foremost collection of ivory and other elephant product seizures containing nearly 20,000 records from some 90 countries or territories worldwide since 1989. It is managed by TRAFFIC on behalf of Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), who met this March in Bangkok, Thailand.

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FLORA AND FAUNA

Kenya to toughen poaching sentences to save elephants

by Staff Writers
Nairobi (AFP) April 06, 2013

Kenya plans to bolster current lenient sentences for convicted wildlife poachers or ivory smugglers in a bid to stamp out a spike in elephant killings, the government said Saturday.

“We intend to fight poachers at all levels to save our elephants,” government spokesman Muthui Kariuki said in a statement.

A major obstacle to this is that Kenyan courts are currently limited in their powers to jail or fine those convicted of wildlife crimes, he said.

“One of the major setbacks are lenient penalties and sentencing for wildlife crime by the courts,” he said.

“The government is concerned about this and has facilitated the process of reviewing the wildlife law and policy with a view to having more deterrent penalties and jail terms.”

Poaching has recently risen sharply in east Africa, with whole herds of elephants massacred for their ivory. Rhinos have also been targeted.

Passing tougher wildlife laws will be made a priority for Kenya’s parliament, elected last month but which has yet to begin business.

“We look forward to… parliament giving priority to passing of a new wildlife law and policy,” Kariuki added.

Kenya’s current wildlife act caps punishment for the most serious wildlife crimes at a maximum fine of 40,000 Kenyan shillings (470 dollars, 365 euros), and a possible jail term of up to 10 years.

Last month, a Chinese smuggler caught in Kenya with a haul of ivory was fined less than a dollar (euro) a piece.

 

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Kenyan, Tanzanian poachers arrested in possession of ivory

Souce:Xinhua Publish By Updated 07/04/2013 6:21 am

NAIROBI, April 6 — Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) said two suspected poachers, a Tanzanian and his Kenyan accomplice have been arrested while in possession of six pieces of ivory weighing 43kilograms.

KWS said in a statement issued on Saturday that Emellian Shirima, Tanzanian, and Uchapa Mirie, Kenyan were arrested on Thursday in Taita Taveta in the coastal region.

“It is believed that the ivory was from a recent poaching incident in the area. KWS officials will prefer charges against the suspects for being in illegal possession, dealing with a government trophy and failing to make a report of being in its possession to authorities,” the statement said.

In February, two Tanzanians were arraigned in a Nairobi court after they were arrested with 16 pieces of ivory weighing 141 kilograms in Ongata Rongai Township on the outskirts of Nairobi. A Tanzanian registered vehicle was impounded in the incident.

Rampant poaching in Kenya has forced the wildlife agency to step up anti-poaching measures after experiencing a loss of 19 elephants since the beginning of 2012.

 

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FLORA AND FAUNA

by Staff Writers
Nairobi (AFP)

Officials in the Kenyan port city of Mombasa have impounded more than 600 pieces of ivory, weighing two tonnes, they said Tuesday, the latest in a series of seizures by Kenyan authorities.

“They were labelled as decorating stones and were headed to Indonesia from Tanzania,” a police source based at the port told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The head of operations at the port, Gitau Gitau, confirmed the seizure, but said no arrests had been made. Gitau said the documents used to ship the cargo would be used to track its owners, and added that the seized ivory is valued at more than $1 million (750,000 euros).

Two weeks ago, officials in Hong Kong seized more than a tonne of ivory worth about $1.4 million in a shipment from Kenya.

The international trade in elephant ivory, with rare exceptions, has been outlawed since 1989 after elephant populations in Africa dropped from millions in the mid-20th century to some 600,000 by the end of the 1980s.

Ivory trade is banned under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

 

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Crossroads News : Changes In The World Around Us And Our Place In It

Animal Advocacy : Poaching  – Conservation – Protection

 

Religious fervor drives elephant slaughter

mongabay.com

Legal ivory trade failing to protect elephants

Sumatran elephants

 

The legal ivory trade is failing to protect elephants which are being slaughtered en mass across the African continent to meet demand for religious trinkets, argues a new investigative report published in National Geographic by Bryan Christy.

The report, researched and written over a three year period, looked at supply and demand the elephant ivory market. It found that substantial quantities of ivory is being used to make religious trinkets including “ivory baby Jesuses and saints for Catholics in the Philippines, Islamic prayer beads for Muslims and Coptic crosses for Christians in Egypt, amulets and carvings for Buddhists in Thailand, and in China—the world’s biggest ivory-consumer country—elaborate Buddhist and Taoist carvings for investors,” according to a post on National Geographic News.

Ivory is coming primarily from the black market. The cost for elephants is high: a conservative estimate puts the slaughter at 25,000 elephants in 2011 alone.

The article argues that decisions made by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the organization that sets policies to regulate trade in wildlife products, have played a critical role in facilitating elephant ivory trafficking. Specifically, one-off ivory sales sanctioned by CITES have buoyed demand for ivory products and confused the marketplace into the legality of elephant ivory.

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), a group that campaigns against the elephant ivory trade, says Blood Ivory reveals the “enormity and extent of the illegal international trade in ivory” and shows that “the CITES ivory-trading mechanism is profoundly flawed, empirically unsupportable and has itself become a major driver of poaching and the illegal international trade in ivory.” The group is calling for a re-evaluation of CITES’ policies.

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