France destroys over 500 kilos of ivory stocks
By Agence France-Presse
Authorities in the southern French city of Nice on Wednesday destroyed more than 500 kilogrammes of ivory as part of the international campaign to end elephant poaching, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) announced.
Most of the so-called “white gold”, which comes from elephant tusks, was seized by the authorities during auctions or online sales, but 100 of the 563 kilogrammes (1,241 pounds) crushed came from members of the public responding to IFAW’s “ivory surrender” campaign.
France banned all sales of elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn in 2016.
“France is sending a strong signal to the world about combatting the illegal trade in endangered species,” said Francoise Taheri, a senior official for the southern Alpes-Maritime region where Nice is situated.
The operation was the third of its kind in France in four years and brings the total amount of ivory destroyed to over a metric tonne.
The ivory trade has been banned worldwide since 1989 but the ban does not cover sales of ivory obtained before then.