Foster leads call for robust action against wildlife crime

21-Oct-2015 @ 16:15

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The EU must take more robust action to tackle international wildlife crime, the Deputy Leader of the Conservatives in the European Parliament, Jacqueline Foster, has said.

The North West MEP has chaired a major seminar to discuss the EU's accession to CITES - the international convention on trade in endangered species.

Bringing together politicians, officials and animal rights experts, the seminar was an opportunity to discuss the EU's priorities for tackling global wildlife crime.

Mrs Foster, the vice-chairman of the European Parliament's animal welfare parliamentary intergroup said:

"I am delighted that we have taken this opportunity at such an early stage in the EU's membership of CITES, because we urgently need to develop a comprehensive action plan to address the growing problem of wildlife crime.

"In the light of Prince William's speech to the Chinese people about the threats posed by the illegal trade in ivory, to coincide with the state visit to the UK of President Xi Jinping, the timing of the seminar was perfect.

"I am calling on the European Commission and national governments to make full use of the EU's membership of CITES to finally get to grips with illegal wildlife trade.

"There have been many meetings over many years, but I am concerned that it is currently all talk and no action.

"At the rate things are progressing, by the time we finally take action, our endangered species may have become extinct."

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