Elephants in Africa facing 'alarming declines': activists
AFPBANGKOK--African elephants face the worst crisis since global trade in ivory was banned almost a quarter-century ago, with the risk of extinction rising in worst-hit nations, conservationists said Wednesday.
March 7, 2013, 11:58 am TWN
Illicit trade in ivory — driven by organized crime rings — has doubled since 2007 and more than tripled over the past 15 years, experts warned on the sidelines of a major conference on endangered species in Bangkok.
“Current population estimates suggest alarming declines in elephant numbers in parts of Central and West Africa, as well as an increasing risk of the local extinction of some populations,” according to the report by the U.N. Environment Program and other wildlife groups.
“Previously secure populations in Eastern and Southern Africa are under growing threat, as a wave of poaching seems to be spreading east and southward across the African continent.”
The plight of Africa's elephants and rhinos is top of the agenda at a meeting of 178 member nations of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species in the Thai capital this week.