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Thais go #IvoryFree with WildAid and USAID

Celebrities, business leaders, politicians, sports stars and other influential Thais nationwide are joining the #IvoryFree campaign, a social media movement and pledge to never buy, use or give ivory as gifts. 

More than 100 Thai celebrities and some of the country's most influential personalities have joined WildAid and USAID Wildlife Asia's joint campaign, called "I am #IvoryFree," to deter the purchase of ivory in Thailand.

View the campaign.

African rangers support Hong Kong ivory ban

A Kenyan ranger was among those who addressed Hong Kong's Legislative Council (LegCo) last week urging lawmakers to support a ban on ivory sales in the city.

WildAid and CHANGE launch Ivory Free Campaign in Vietnam

High level representatives from Vietnamese government agencies and foreign consulates joined WildAid and CHANGE in Ho Chi Minh City to support the global effort to save elephants from poaching and the illegal wildlife trade. WildAid ambassadors Pham Huong, Le Hang, and Trac Thuy Mieu also participated in the campaign launch along with partner organizations and others. 

Revered in Vietnam's culture, elephants are protected by the government, and trade in ivory is prohibited. However, for the past few years, large shipments of ivory have been illegally trafficked though Vietnam. The Ivory Free Vietnam campaign aims to highlight the ivory poaching crisis decimating elephant populations in Africa, encourage people not to buy ivory, and help the government further strengthen its enforcement of illegal ivory shipments passing through to other markets.

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Hong Kong makes record ivory seizure and arrests suspected traffickers

Customs officials in Hong Kong have seized about 7,200 kilograms of ivory, or nearly 16,000 pounds, from a shipping container that originated in Malaysia. The haul is the largest ever intercepted by any law enforcement authority worldwide since records began in 1989.

Three suspects have been arrested in connection with the crime, according to a customs press release. If convicted of multiple smuggling offenses, the perpetrators face up to nine years in prison and fines of HK$7 million (US$900,000) each.

The ivory seized represents 700 to 1,000 dead elephants, and includes many small tusks from calves. The size, shape and dark color of the tusks indicate that they likely came from imperiled Central African forest elephants.

Hong Kong announces bill to ban ivory trade

Hong Kong came one step closer to legislating a full ivory trade ban on Tuesday after a heated debate between conservationists and ivory traders. 

At a special meeting of the Hong Kong Legislative Council Panel on Environmental Affairs, it was announced that a new bill banning ivory will be put forward on 14 June 2017.

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