China destroys 662 kg of illegal ivory

Updated: 2015-05-30 07:52

By ZHANG YAN(China Daily / Xinhua)

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China destroys 662 kg of illegal ivory

Law enforcement officers destroy confiscated tusks and ivory artworks at the Beijing Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center on Friday. WANG JING/CHINA DAILY

The Chinese government on Friday destroyed 662 kg of confiscated ivory, the second such demonstration of its stance against wildlife crime.

The illegal ivory, which was seized over the past year, was dumped into crushers in Beijing and ground down by the State Forestry Administration (SFA) and the General Administration of Customs (GAC).

In January last year, 6.1 tonnes of confiscated ivory were destroyed in the southern city of Dongguan.

The country is to step up its efforts to combat the illegal trade in endangered species and wildlife products, a minister said on Friday as he witnessed the destruction in Beijing.

The ivory was crushed in front of diplomats and reporters at the Beijing Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center in Shunyi district as a demonstration of the stance the country is taking against the trade, the State Forestry Administration said.

Engraved tusks and carved ivory artworks were fed into a large crushing machine that sent clouds of dust and powder into the air.

The ivory was smuggled from Africa either by travelers who carried it in their luggage or through the mail service.

"This event has demonstrated the Chinese government's firm resolution to protect the environment, conserve wildlife and combat the illegal trade in wildlife and wildlife products, including ivory," said Zhao Shucong, the minister in charge of the administration.

He said stricter measures will be taken to prevent illegal movements of wildlife and products made from it by transportation, post and express delivery companies.

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