China, USA to ban trade in ivory

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

IN A bi­lat­eral meet­ing on the side­lines of the UN Gen­eral As­sem­bly ses­sion in Septem­ber-end, the Chi­nese and Amer­i­can pres­i­dents an­nounced that the two coun­tries would take swift ac­tion to pro­tect ele­phants from the on­go­ing poach­ing cri­sis. In a joint state­ment, the pres­i­dents com­mit­ted to en­act­ing "nearly com­plete bans on ivory im­ports and ex­ports, in­clud­ing sig­nif­i­cant and timely re­stric­tions on the im­port of ivory as hunt­ing tro­phies," and promised to "take sig­nif­i­cant and timely steps to halt the do­mes­tic com­mer­cial trade of ivory". The US gov­ern­ment had al­ready com­mit­ted to a "near to­tal ban" on ivory trade. It is es­ti­mated that 35,000 ele­phants are killed ev­ery year—or one ev­ery 15 min­utes.

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