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    Botswana: SADC countries tighten screws on ivory trade

    APA-Gaborone (Botswana)

    Members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) have made a proposal to prevent any future plans to sell ivory ahead of a CITES meeting scheduled for May 23-June 3 in Sri Lanka, APA learnt here on Tuesday.

    According to a report released by the secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), four SADC member states – Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe – have applied to transfer elephants from Appendix II to Appendix I.

    Animal species that are listed in in Appendix I are banned from all commercial international trade, while those listed in Appendix II can be traded under special permit conditions.

    The move by the four countries is seen making the possibility of any future “one-off” ivory sales by these nations extremely difficult.

    The report shows that Zambia has, on the other hand, proposed that its elephant population be moved from Appendix I to Appendix II — presumably to pave the way for the country to take part in any future sales of government-owned ivory stockpiles.

    KO/jn/APA

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