Yaoundé, Cameroon – 17 poachers armed with Kalashnikov rifles last monday had massacred at least 26 elephants within the Dzanga Bai World Heritage Site in Central African Republic. According to the sources from WWF, the carcasses were found nearby the Bai, a large clearing where 50 to 200 elephants gather everyday to drink nutrients present in the sands.
Among the dead elephants, it has been identified that four of them were calves.
In addition, ever since the poachers entered the compound, there has been zero sightings of elephants at the Bai or now also known as an “elephant mortuary” concerning to the recent event.
According to the WWF website ” although the 17 individuals who presented themselves as government forces have left the compound, WWF and its affiliates fear that the killing will continue unless the area is properly secured”.
Due to the violence and chaos surrounding within the Bai, WWF and other conservation partners have left their offices for security reasons.
According to Jim Leape, WWF International Director General,”The Central African Republic must secure the World Heritage site as soon as possible. The violence that we have witnessed has put the population in the area in jeopardy as well as the people who will live there in the future. This also includes the requirement of international community in assisting the Central African Republic to protect the site.
“WWF also calls Cameroon and the Republic of Congo in helping to preserve the site which includes the Bai and other large neighbouring areas of these two countries.
“What has happened in Dzanga Bai serves as a feasible threat that Central Africa is facing. Within the past ten years, the populations of the elephant has plummeted to 62 per cent.
“Such event should also be pondered by China and Thailand to put a halt on their commitment towards banning ivory market trading which acts as a fuel for the poachers to supply to the market.”
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