Support to Strengthen Wildlife Law Enforcement | WWF

Support to Strengthen Wildlife Law Enforcement

The Lao PDR has recently been receiving a lot of attention by the international community with regard to the issue of illegal wildlife trade. The Lao PDR has been identified by many observers as a transit country for the illegal trade of wildlife products coming from Africa and ultimately destined for China and Vietnam. Recent reports have also identified that the Lao PDR is becoming a consuming country for items such as ivory, rhinoceros horns and tiger products, predominantly purchased by tourists coming from neighboring Thailand, China and Vietnam. Most recently, in July 2016, the CITES secretariat made a visit to the Lao PDR and subsequently published a report highlighting the most urgent actions to be taken by the Lao PDR to comply with its international obligations under CITES. 

At the CITES COP 17 in Johannesburg, September 2016, the Lao PDR announced its intention to discuss ways of phasing out its tiger and bear farms. This announcement was very much welcomed by all conservation parties, including WWF. This activity comes in direct support of this dynamic approach led by the Government of Laos and seeks to support the Government’s initiatives to stop illegal wildlife trade in the country.

 

The overall goal of the Activity is to support the Government of Laos to address illegal wildlife trade in key markets and trade hubs in the country. The Activity also aims to support awareness and information-sharing, strengthen law enforcement, and enhance international cooperation for key government agencies in Lao PDR

This activity is also to provide support for Lao PDR Government agencies, through the Department of Forest Inspection (DoFI) as lead agency of Lao-WEN, to participate in relevant regional and international meetings on illegal wildlife trade.

 

 
 
	© Bounpone Sookmexay / WWF-Laos
Country Director of WWF-Laos and Director of the Department of Forest Inspection (DoFI) Sign a Memorandum of Agreement on Support to Strengthen Wildlife Law Enforcement and Cross-Border Cooperation Activity.
© Bounpone Sookmexay / WWF-Laos
 
	© Bounpone Sookmexay / WWF-Laos
Representatives from the Department of Forest Inspection (DoFI) and WWF-Laos meet to witness the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement.
© Bounpone Sookmexay / WWF-Laos

Wildlife scientists warn against extinction crisis in SE Asian forests, call for new laws against poaching snares

An alarming increase in snares in Southeast Asian forests is pushing many species such as leopards, tigers and saola to the brink of extinction and could lead to “empty forest syndrome,” say leading conservation scientists who are calling for concerted regional action against poaching and the possession of snares.

 

Writing in the prestigious international journal SCIENCE, the authors point to an alarming increase in unsustainable hunting both inside and outside protected areas – driven largely by cheaply made homemade wire snares that kill or maim any animal that encounters them.The authors note that patrols cannot keep up with the pace of snares set by poachers and call for laws that penalize snare possession and the materials used for their construction.

 
	© Lorraine Scotson / Free the Bears
Wildlife scientists warn against extinction crisis in SE Asian forests, call for new laws against poaching snares
© Lorraine Scotson / Free the Bears