Battle continues against illegal poaching of elephants for ivory


Zhu Dan, CCTV America/Hong Kong

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Few conservation battles have garnered more global attention than the current crisis facing Africa’s elephants. Resurgence in consumer demand for ivory, primarily in Asia, has resulted in widespread poaching across the African continent.

Much of this ivory is smuggled into Hong Kong, a longstanding hub for the international ivory trade. CCTV’s Zhu Dan reports from Hong Kong.

Every year, 33,000 elephants are killed across the African continent due to poaching. Despite this, the Chinese mainland, the U.S. and Hong Kong are making efforts to combat the practice.

In 2013, the U.S. destroyed six tons of ivory. In 2014, the Chinese mainland destroyed six tons while Hong Kong destroyed nearly 30 tons.

In his 2016 policy address, Hong Kong’s chief executive pledged to begin the legislative process to ban the import and export of elephant hunting trophies.

According to official figures, 242 tons of ivory were sold in Hong Kong between 1990 and 2008, an average of around 13 tons a year. Since 2010, recorded sales have slowed.

A survey by the University of Hong Kong showed 75 percent of respondents said they support an ivory sale ban in Hong Kong.

Children in Hong Kong can also join the campaign, saying no to the illegal ivory trade.

Leaders and conservationists work together against poaching

Kenya is preparing what it hopes will be the biggest anti-poaching event in African history.

It is burning a massive hoard of ivory and rhino horn, more than 100 tones, worth close to $200 million on the black market.

And several African leaders are expected to help set the fires. Ahead of Saturday’s event, officials from across Africa have been gathering to discuss ways to beat the poachers CCTV’s Clementine Logan reports.