The Kenyan Wildlife Service's head of species conservation and management, Patrick Omondi, is addressing the US Congress about the current state of ivory trade in Africa. In March, the Convention on International Trade on Endangered Species (CITES) will meet and face requests from countries such as Tanzania and Zambia to relax the ban on the ivory trade.
But the issue is not a simple one. Tanzania and Zambia are requesting a one-off sale of their 110-tonne stockpile of ivory. Kenya argues that as a result of previous one-off sales, ivory demand has gone up dramatically.
Kenya and 23 other nations in the African Elephant Coalition hope to extend the current moratorium on ivory trade from nine years to 20 years and reject the request for a one-off sale.
Elephant populations all over Africa are dwindling, and we need to voice our support for Kenya's efforts to protect these populations.
Tell the US Congress to extend the ivory trade ban and reject the one-off sale requested by Tanzania and Zambia.
By now you should have heard a testimony from Patrick Omondi, the head of species conservation and management of the Kenyan Wildlife Service. I am writing to support his proposals for an extension of the moratorium on ivory trade to 20 years, and to support his rejection of Tanzania and Zambia's request for a one-off sale of 110 tonnes of ivory at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
Populations of elephants are suffering all over Africa, and yet ivory demand has increased. Kenya reports that after previous one-off sales, the number of elephants killed has increased. This is a cycle that needs to stop. We need to reduce the incentives for poachers to continue hunting.
I urge you to take Mr. Omondi's words into serious consideration. Thank you for your time.
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