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Kenya calls for use of technology to fight illegal wildlife trade   

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s first lady Margaret Kenyatta on Thursday called for a holistic approach that embraces technology in fighting illegal wildlife trade in the east African nation.

One of the greatest challenges facing wildlife conservation is the sophistication of the methods used by wildlife traffickers around the world, Margaret said.

“We must look at new ways in this new age of technology and innovation,” she said in Nairobi during the official opening of an awareness workshop on combating illegal wildlife trafficking.

“We need a synergistic approach, one that harnesses the complementary capabilities of diverse sectors and groups. We must apply better intelligence and new methods because pressure is building and countries continue to suffer huge losses,” she added.

The first lady noted that wildlife conservation is becoming an increasingly prominent global issue, stressing that focused leadership, political goodwill, policies and imposition of bans have helped Kenya in registering significant progress in combating the illegal wildlife trade.

She urged officials to accelerate their efforts and increase investments in the fight against illegal trade since wildlife heritage and invaluable resource is under threat.

“We must build better and stronger networks that consider all possibilities and close out the loopholes that have allowed the growth of illegal trade,” she said.

The first lady expressed confidence that innovative measures that include the global transportation systems would help break the illegal chains of unlawful transportation of endangered species.

“From my work in Hands off Our Elephants, I have learned that wildlife populations of elephant, rhino, buffalo, giraffe and zebra have been decreasing over the years due to illegal wildlife trafficking and trade. We must ensure that we secure our heritage for our future and for our children’s future,” she said.


Kenya Airways vows to step up fight against illegal wildlife trade

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya Airways vowed on Thursday to intensify efforts aimed at combating illegal wildlife trade to help curb poaching in the east African nation.

Kenya Airways Group Managing Director Sebastian Mikosz said the airline has also signed up to the Buckingham Palace Declaration, which aims to curb trading on illegal wildlife products at major transportation hubs.

“This underlines our unquestionable commitment to zero tolerance policy against illegal wildlife trafficking and trade,” Mikosz said during the Awareness Training on Combating of Wildlife Trafficking forum in Nairobi.

A total of 89 airlines and organizations have signed the declaration, including the International Air Transport Association (IATA), African Airlines Association, Association of South Pacific airlines, and the International Airlines Group.

Mikosz said it is vital that the private sector work in collaboration with all the government agencies and international partners to scale up the response to conservation challenges.

“Kenya Airways is a key player in the industry and we stand for sustainable tourism,” he said at the forum, which was attended by conservationists and diplomats.

Kenya’s First Lady Margaret Kenyatta lauded the initiative signed by the national carrier, saying it would break the supply chains.

“I applaud this initiative that stands out as an innovative measure that includes the global transportation systems to help break these illegal chains of unlawful transportation of endangered species,” she said.



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