Army to fight Cameroon elephant poachers

2012-03-02 22:16
Douala - Cameroon has launched a military offensive to flush out elephant poachers from a remote national park in the country's northeast near the border with Chad.

Defence Minister Alain Mebe Ngo'o announced the operation on state television late Thursday, saying that the country needed to take action against the poachers believed to be from Sudan.

In just eight weeks, the World Wildlife Fund estimates that the poachers have decimated the elephant population, killing between 200 and 300 of the roughly 400 elephants in the Bouba N'Djida National Park.

The wildlife group said in a statement released on Friday that the military operation was launched on Wednesday night after a high-level meeting between the minister of defense and the minister in charge of wildlife.

The group cited unnamed sources confirming that over 100 Cameroonian soldiers had entered the park on Thursday to secure the area from poachers.

According to the wildlife group, the heavily armed poachers entered Cameroonian territory illegally via the border with Chad in order to harvest the ivory.

"The poachers, who are reportedly Arabic speakers traveling on horseback, are believed to be from Sudan and it is widely speculated that the vast volumes of ivory are destined for Asian markets," said the WWF.

The government has been under pressure to take action from both environmental groups and the European Union, ever since graphic images of the slaughtered elephants were published.

"We saw this situation coming," said Basile Yapo Monssan, the WWF country director. "We have consistently alerted the government on the alarming growing rate of poaching in Cameroon. This is their wake-up call," Yapo says.

In 2010, WWF wrote a letter to the prime minister saying that drastic measures were needed to stop the crossborder poaching. In 2011, a group of 12 ambassadors followed up with a second letter.

Lamine Sebogo, the group's elephant coordinator, said that northern Cameroon's elephant population represents 80% of the total population of savanna elephants in all of Central Africa.

"Any remaining elephant population remains at high risk until military forces are able to secure the area," said the WWF. "It is absolutely vital that the [military] exercise is not a publicity stunt - the poachers must be engaged, arrested and prosecuted to send out a strong message."

- SAPA
Read more on:    wwf  |  eu  |  cameroon  |  sudan  |  east africa  |  central africa  |  animals  |  poaching
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
SPONSORED CONTENT
When is a mountain more than just a mountain? 2014-12-18 07:26

When it’s an adventure! A group of Old Mutual employees found out how much is enough courage, endurance and camaraderie to take on Africa's highest peak.

/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Summer Survey!
Great ideas for the best summer sandwiches!
Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The energy today is serious, materialistic and hardworking. You may find you get a new outlook on things and you may want to spend...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.