New global commitments announced by Prince William to cut wildlife crime
We welcome today’s announcement that a taskforce will be created to combat the role of transport in facilitating wildlife crime, helping to alleviate the suffering of millions of wild animals.
Prince William of the United Kingdom spoke today at the World Bank’s International Corruption Hunters Alliance conference on illegal wildlife trafficking and the role transport agencies can play in combatting the cruel trade. We welcome the announcement and the recognition that urgent action is needed.
The illegal wildlife trade is now the fourth most lucrative transnational crime after drugs, arms and human trafficking. It is estimated to be worth between 10 and 20 billion dollars each year. Left unchecked it will continue to cause extreme suffering in millions of wild animals each and every year.
World Animal Protection Chief Executive, Mike Baker said:
“Tiger cubs drugged in suitcases, 1,700 live animals found in the boot of a hatchback car and monkeys sedated and taped to a passenger’s body. These are just a few examples of the abhorrent ways that animals are transported by criminals after being torn from their habitats to be traded for money. We must act now to expose and disrupt the trade routes and criminals who are killing and harming the world’s wildlife.
“Our wildlife is in crisis, and the trade in live wildlife is causing some of the worst suffering imaginable. The shocking fact is that up to 80% of these animals die in transit, and many more will die within a year from the trauma of captivity.
“World Animal Protection welcomes this desperately needed initiative to bring together airlines, shipping companies and couriers, with animal welfare and conservation organisations to combat the hi-jacking of their transport services for wildlife crime. The commitment shown by HRH Prince William to combatting wildlife crime, keeps this urgent issue firmly on the global stage.”
We have recently had success in the UK campaigning to safeguard the future of the Metropolitan Police’s Wildlife Crime Unit. The unit is leading the fight against wildlife crime in London, a city of international importance in global wildlife crime.
In 2015 we will be ramping up our campaign globally so watch this space. Together we can move the world to end the illegal trade in wildlife and save the lives of millions of animals each year.
Learn more about our work to protect wild animals around the world.