‘Sub-Saharan Africa hotbed of illicit trade’

In the shadowy realm of wildlife trafficking, Sub-Saharan Africa emerges as a hotbed for illicit trade routes and clandestine operations fueling the multi-billion-dollar industry.

Recent data contained in the World Wildlife Crime Report 2024 reveals this region accounts for a staggering 19 percent share of seizures of wildlife materials worldwide, underscoring its status as one of the most common sources of trafficked wildlife.

Between 2015 and 2021, the flow of illegal wildlife trade surged from sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, constituting 44 percent of all recorded seizures.

Among the species groups targeted, pangolins bore the brunt with a staggering 32 percent share, highlighting the dire plight of these endangered creatures.

Additionally, elephants, carnivores and pangolins illegally traded as scales, meat, bodies and also as live specimens; ranked among the top five species groups seized during this period, exposing the breadth and depth of the crisis.

A recent report has unveiled Africa as a significant source of trafficked wildlife, accounting for 19 percent of global seizures of wildlife materials. Shockingly, all reported seizures on the continent were concentrated within the Sub-Saharan region, painting a stark picture of the region’s role in fueling this illicit trade.

The study, conducted in collaboration with the International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime (ICCWC) which includes key stakeholders like Cites, Interpol, the World Bank, and the World Customs Organisation, sheds light on the scale and scope of wildlife trafficking in the region.

Initiated in response to a United Nations General Assembly resolution on Tackling Illegal Trafficking in Wildlife adopted in 2021, the report aims to bolster efforts to combat illegal wildlife trade and protect biodiversity. The report focuses on crimes associated with the illegal harvest and trade of wildlife species, in direct violation of national laws and international conventions.The East African

 

 

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