Chester MP, Chris Matheson has lent his support to a new ivory surrender launched by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) to help protect elephants from further slaughter for the illegal ivory trade.
Members of the public are being invited to surrender their own ivory which will be destroyed as part of a campaign to close the UK’s ivory market and save this iconic species from the threat of extinction.
IFAW, which has run previous successful public ivory surrenders in the UK, believes it is vital now more than ever before that the British public stand up for elephants by helping to end consumer demand for ivory products and keep up the pressure for a domestic ban on the ivory trade.
Chris said: “Elephant populations are at an all-time low. Ivory poaching will lead to extinction and this is unacceptable. When I look at these magnificent animals at Chester zoo, I cannot understand why anyone would kill one just for its tusks. Time really is running out for elephants in the wild – 20,000 are killed every year - if we do not act now it will be too late.”
The legal ivory trade often provides a smokescreen for more illegal killing of elephants and by donating unwanted ivory, IFAW believes members of the public can make a positive contribution to elephant protection. A small number of ivory items will be retained for education and publicity purposes while other donations will be immediately transferred to a secret and secure location and ultimately destroyed by the appropriate Government agency.
IFAW continues to call on the UK Government to ban ivory sales in the UK as a priority.
Chris concluded: “For a long time, ivory has been seen by many as a status symbol and something to value, but the reality is that a piece of ivory represents a dead elephant, cruelly shot or poisoned for its tusks.”
Anyone wishing to donate ivory items is asked to post them to: Campaigns Department, International Fund for Animal Welfare, 87-90 Albert Embankment, London, SE1 7UD. For queries or large items, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 7587 6700.
1) About IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare): Founded in 1969, IFAW saves animals in crisis around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For more information, visit www.ifaw.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter
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