Ivory Seized in Nairobi

Ivory Seized in Nairobi
Thursday, 31 March, 2016
Nairobi, Kenya

The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Canine Unit on Tuesday seized 64.12 kilograms of ivory at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA). The seizure was in transit from Mozambique to Bangkok. KWS said investigations are underway to determine the source and recipients’ of the illicit ivory.

Kenyan poaching incidents have dramatically reduced over the last two years. In 2014, 164 elephants and 35 rhinos were killed numbers which reduced in 2015 to 96 elephants and 11 rhinos.

“A key strategy to suppressing the transnational threat to wildlife is to engage the entire enforcement chain from detection and apprehension, successful prosecution and ultimate incarceration of the perpetrators. We also need to lay more emphasis on interagency collaboration at national, regional and cross continental levels to curb this vice,” stated James Isiche, Regional Director IFAW, East Africa.

“While we commend KWS on this latest seizure and though on the right track here in Kenya, elsewhere in Africa the war on poaching and wildlife trafficking is far from over as wildlife continues to be killed by poachers,” Isiche added.

It is estimated that between 25,000 and 50,000 elephants a year a killed by poachers for their ivory.

In January 2014 Kenya’s Wildlife Conservation and Management Bill 2013 which provides for substantially stiffer jail sentences and massive fines for wildlife criminals was enacted. In the Bill those convicted of offences relating to endangered and threatened species are liable to fines of not less than 10 million Kenyan shillings (approximately USD 100,000) or to imprisonment of not less than 15 years or both.

On 30th April 2016 Kenya will destroy the world’s largest stockpile ever to be burnt of over 100 tonnes of ivory and 1.5 tonnes of rhino horn. The destruction will demonstrate Kenya’s commitment to seeking a total global ban in the trade of ivory and rhino horn.

According to an IFAW report Criminal Nature: The Global Security Implications of the Illegal Wildlife Trade, ivory smuggling and the wildlife trade has been linked to other forms of organized crime including terrorism, illegal arms and drug trafficking.

As part of a worldwide capacity building initiative IFAW has trained over 2,800 law enforcement officers in wildlife trafficking prevention in several countries throughout Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Oceania, and the Caribbean.

About IFAW (The International Fund for Animal Welfare)

Founded in 1969, IFAW rescues and protects animals around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals, and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For more information, visit www.ifaw.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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