Gabon: 300 kg of ivory stolen


Agence France Presse

Date Published
Note: Automatic translation from French.
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Three hundred kilograms of ivory from elephant poaching were stolen in Oyem court in northern Gabon, where they were stored for several months, according to the Environmental Defense NGO World Wildlife Fund (WWF ).
“Thieves broke into a local court in northern Gabon (…) and stole up to 300 kg of ivory confiscated”, the equivalent of about 50 elephant tusks, says WWF Africa plant in a statement received by AFP Tuesday.
The ivory was seized with many illegal weapons during anti-poaching operations in recent months and was to be transferred in the coming days in a centralized warehouse capital Libreville, according to the NGO, which states that ” ivory and weapons find themselves once again in the hands of criminals (…) would call ivory on the black market. “
“Gabon has a good reputation internationally in the field of the fight against wildlife crime, but this flight demonstrates that the reality on the ground is very different,” said Martha Mapangou, Director of WWF Gabon, quoted in the document.
This is the third time of ivory stocks in possession of the Gabonese government disappear, and “no one has yet been brought to justice,” says the WWF, recalling that similar events have also occurred in other countries Central Africa and Cameroon.
“These unfortunate incidents raise serious questions about the management of ivory stocks by the countries of the Congo Basin ,” said Lamine Sebogo , head of elephant conservation program in Africa to WWF .
“We urge governments to ensure security and a much more rigorous management of their ivory stocks ,” he added .
According to WWF , 62% of forest elephants in the Congo Basin have disappeared since 2002, decimated by poaching and ivory trafficking .
Gabonese President Ali Bongo Ondimba, which is positioned as a leader of the anti-poaching in Africa and promotes a “green Gabon ” was publicly burned in 2012 seized five tonnes of ivory.