Two rhinoceros are seen in the Chobe National Park, northern Botswana, March. 24, 2015. The Kasane Conference on The Illegal Wildlife Trade was held on Tuesday in Kasane, the gateway to the Chobe National Park, with delegations from 35 countries and around 20 international organizations. (Xinhua/Lu Tianran)(azp)
Two rhinoceros are seen in the Chobe National Park, northern Botswana, March. 24, 2015. The Kasane Conference on The Illegal Wildlife Trade was held on Tuesday in Kasane, the gateway to the Chobe National Park, with delegations from 35 countries and around 20 international organizations. (Xinhua/Lu Tianran)(azp)

The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) on Monday called for closer collaboration among law enforcement agencies both locally and globally to combat wildlife crime in Kenya.

Two rhinoceros are seen in the Chobe National Park, northern Botswana, March. 24, 2015. The Kasane Conference on The Illegal Wildlife Trade was held on Tuesday in Kasane, the gateway to the Chobe National Park, with delegations from 35 countries and around 20 international organizations. (Xinhua/Lu Tianran)(azp)
Two rhinoceros are seen in the Chobe National Park, northern Botswana, March. 24, 2015. The Kasane Conference on The Illegal Wildlife Trade was held on Tuesday in Kasane, the gateway to the Chobe National Park, with delegations from 35 countries and around 20 international organizations. (Xinhua/Lu Tianran)(azp)

IFAW’s regional director for East Africa, James Isiche, said cooperating with agencies such as Interpol and the law enforcement bodies of other governments can help map and profile those behind the most tragic slaughter of elephants.
“No country or organization can single-handedly combat wildlife killing and trafficking, hence the need to develop strong partnerships not only amongst countries but international agencies, ” Isiche said in a statement issued in Nairobi.
He was responding to Kenya’s latest arrest of three suspects, thought to be the kingpins linked to the seizures of nearly seven tones of elephant ivory in Singapore and Thailand since the end of April.
Last week, a multi-agency task force arrested the suspects, a wealthy business man and his two sons, in an unmarked area of Mombasa. The arrest brings the number of individuals arrested in connection with the illegal shipment of ivory from Mombasa Port to 14.
In April, Thai authorities seized 3 tonnes of ivory hidden in tea leaf sacks from Kenya in the second-biggest bust in the country’s history. And in May, authorities in Singapore, operating on a tip-off from Kenya Revenue Authority customs officials, seized a shipment of ivory worth 6 million dollars en route to Laos from Mombassa.
“These arrests are an admirable demonstration of how multi- agency cooperation can help stop the poaching of elephants and illegal trade,” Isiche said.
Police said a raid on the Mombasa home of the suspects had revealed multiple identity documents, in different names and for both Kenya and Tanzania. The investigation was conducted by officials from a variety of Kenya’s law enforcement agencies, and Interpol.
“IFAW is happy to support such initiatives and strongly believes that a coordinated inter-country and inter-agency approach amongst source, transit and destination countries is critical to effectively mitigate wildlife crime,” Isiche said.
President Uhuru Kenyatta last week vowed to arrest and prosecute all government officials linked to ivory trafficking.
Isiche said the pledge by the president to lead the war against the trafficking of ivory from the front is refreshing, and should be emulated by leaders in the region and globally.
“Indeed the only way that Kenya will end this stigma of being the trafficking route of choice is by smashing the cartels and bringing the main culprits to book whether they are dealers or facilitators in government,” he said. Enditem

-Xinhua

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