Xinhua (China)
August 9, 2018

Wildlife and plant protection officials in South Sudan are worried about
the growing number of elephant poaching cases on the country’s reserves.

Thomas Sebit, deputy spokesman of the Ministry for the Conservation of
Fauna and Flora and Tourism, told Xinhua on Wednesday that around 20
elephants have been killed in the East African country since the beginning
of the year.

Sebit said the airport authorities seized 24 ivory elephant tusks that were
to be delivered to the capital Juba from Pibor town in the east of the

He added that environmentalists have seized at least 46 pieces of illegal
ivory in South Sudan for the past four months alone, showing a drastic
increase in ivory trafficking in the country at war.

“It’s pure destruction, we need to put an end to these animal killings,”
said Sebit.

“We need collective efforts to protect our animals because we are lucky to
still have wild animals after the long civil war, we protected them during
the war and still today we kill them”, he lamented.

South Sudan has the second largest animal migration in the world and is
considered a good place for ecotourism, according to the World Travel and
Tourism Council (WTTC).

The East African country is also known for its vast swampy region (South),
home to about 400 species of birds.

But the tourism industry only accounted for 1.8% of South Sudan’s GDP, WTTC
said in 2013.