Sir Roger Gale supports campaign to stamp out wildlife crime
May 7th 2013
North Thanet’s MP, Sir Roger Gale, has shown his commitment to protecting animals by pledging his support for the International Fund for Animal Welfare’s (IFAW) campaign against wildlife crime.
Sir Roger attended IFAW’s ‘Wildlife Crime – The Fightback’ event at the House of Commons, which was hosted by Neil Parish MP, Chair of the Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare. Key speakers included Environment Minister Richard Benyon MP, and Kelvin Alie, Wildlife Crime Programme Director, IFAW.
Roger posed in front of a large elephant poster to highlight the issue and send a clear message that he wants the UK to take the lead in the international community to stamp out wildlife crime.
Copyright Peter Stevens Photography 2013
IFAW’s event highlighted that some of the planet’s most iconic species are being pushed to the brink of extinction by wildlife crime. The illegal trade in elephant ivory and rhino horn, poaching of wild tigers for their parts, smuggling of rare birds and reptiles for the pet trade and the use of endangered animals in traditional Asian medicines are decimating wild populations. In addition it drew attention to the fact that it is now widely acknowledged that those involved in wildlife crime are often organised criminal syndicates that also deal in illegal drugs and arms.
This was echoed last year, when Hillary Clinton, then US Secretary of State, said, “over the past few years wildlife trafficking has become more organised, more lucrative, more widespread, and more dangerous than ever before…wildlife trafficking has serious implications for the security and prosperity of people around the world”.
Sir Roger says:
“The scale of the illegal trade in the skins and parts of rare animals is horrific and the effect upon endangered species is wholly unacceptable in a world that claims to be civilized. I have travelled to far-flung places often enough in the course of my parliamentary duties to know that in spite of the best efforts of some governments and conservation organizations this vile trade continues. That is why I am so very pleased to support IFAW in its campaign to stamp this out.”
Robbie Marsland, UK Director of IFAW, said: “Wildlife crime is pushing elephants, rhinos, tigers and many other species to the brink of extinction. We are very grateful to Roger for showing his commitment to halting wildlife crime by attending our event.”