In response to the United Nations General Assembly resolution Tackling the Illicit Trafficking in Wildlife, adopted today, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) issued the following statement from Leigh Henry, Senior Policy Advisor:
Wildlife crime is a global crisis requiring a global response. The UN General Assembly today gave us a critical tool in ensuring that global response becomes a reality.
In signing the UNGA’s first ever resolution on wildlife crime, all 193 UN member countries have committed to scaling up efforts to end the poaching and illegal trade that is robbing our planet of some of its most iconic wildlife.
Elephant populations are collapsing in many parts of Africa, and rhino poaching in South Africa has spiked to historic levels. Wildlife crime not only threatens these and countless other species, it also risks the lives and livelihoods of local communities, facilitates corruption, and undermines regional and global security.
The resolution, led by Germany and Gabon, and co-sponsored by more than 80 countries including the US, is a show of international unity around a shared cause. Importantly, it builds on global momentum toward ending wildlife crime, and follows recent commitments by the US, China, and other countries on critical issues like the illegal trade of ivory.
Adoption of this resolution sends a powerful message from the highest possible level. In unison, the world is saying that wildlife crime, and the global criminal syndicates profiting from it, will not be tolerated. WWF stands with the international community in this historic fight.