China lifts ban on sale of rhino and tiger parts
China yesterday defended easing a 25-year ban on trading tiger bones and rhinoceros horns, after conservationists warned it had signed a “death warrant” for endangered species. On Monday, China’s State Council said it would allow the sale of rhino and tiger products under “special circumstances”. Those include scientific research, sales of cultural relics and “medical research or in healing”. Previous regulations had not considered the “reasonable needs of reality”, foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said. But the country had improved its “law enforcement mechanism” and is to crack down on illegal wildlife trading. China prohibited the trade of rhino horn and tiger bones in 1993 but a black market has since flourished. The council said the new regulations would be strictly controlled.