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Should the UK have a complete ban on selling Ivory products?

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, chef come wildlife campaigner, has been looking into the shocking trade in elephant and rhino tusks and horn, in a two part series concluding last night on BBC1.

He travelled to East and South Africa and the Far East interviewing many different people from anti poaching units and the largest owner of rhinos in the world, to rhino horn dealers in Vietnam. Since 2007 over 140,000 elephants have been killed for their ivory, which is about a third of the African population.

He also went to China to see their concerted efforts by the government to stamp out ivory trade and educate Chinese people not to purchase ivory products. Towards the end of the programme he interviewed Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge who is an ardent champion for rhino and elephant conservation. Prince William informed Hugh that one of the best ways to stop the poaching was to eradicate demand in the Far East.

In a Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) that met in early October, a landmark agreement was reached by 182 countries that “legal ivory markets within nations that contribute to poaching or illegal trade must be closed”.

The Conservatives in their 2015 manifesto pledged that they would stop all UK exports of ivory. The law currently states that ivory in the UK that dates prior to 1947 can be sold or exported.  Hugh and the scientists demonstrated that DNA testing is not foolproof as some “pre 1947” ivory carvings were actually DNA dated to post 1947.

Hugh approached Andrea Leadstom, Secretary of State for the Environment, and asked why she did not ban all ivory sales. She said an important first step had been made but evaded the question.

Today more than 70 high profile campaigners including Virginia Mckenna, Martin Clunes, Joanna Lumley and wildlife artist David Shepherd are campaigning for the government to use funding from the Department for International Development to help local people stop elephant and rhino poaching.

Here is a link to a Government Petition to Shut down the domestic ivory market in the UK 

 

What are your views? Should the UK immediately stop all sales and trade in pre 1947 ivory?  Should we spend more UK money helping save elephant and rhino?

Should the UK have a complete ban on selling Ivory products?

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chessnutuk
13th Mar 2017
0
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We in the UK have managed for many years to differentiate between old Ivory and new Ivory and especially the Auction Houses, Museums and Specialist Collectors. It has been used for centuries as a medium for the finest of all carvings and is in most if not all the major collections of Fine Art all over the world.

We are all out to stop the needless slaughter of all Animals, whatever the species if not used for food and that should be the prime target of all organisations & governments in the world.

Scrapping and making it illegal to own old Ivory etc will never work and it will push the Trade Underground and put up the prices and make it more worthwhile for the poachers to keep doing it.

Look at the recent terrible crime in Paris where they shot and killed a White Rhino in the Paris Zoo.

The Poachers and the New Ivory Dealers are the people who should have a very heavy punishment and long Jail Sentences or Hard Labour might help.

I no longer collect Old Ivory Items as they are obviously a problem for People with a conscience, but let me ask, do you where Shoes and Clothes made of fine Leather?

Please think carefully about this subject.
gerryburne
13th Feb 2017
0
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Any little that we can do to reduce the killing of elephants, rhinos and Tigers is worth doing. So there.
Hattie
20th Nov 2016
0
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My daughter is a Wildlife field guide in S/A She spends a lot of time trying to raise money for the training of the Rangers who do the very dangerous job of going after the poachers.
The elephant in her area seem to be doing well because Rangers keep after poachers.
She seems to worry more for the Rhino.
It's sad to say but, the very poor will take the money from the ruthless cartels who in turn, play on the stupid beliefs people have on the medical beliefs of Rhino horn.
Barton babe
12th Nov 2016
0
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Tucks look better on the Elephant, and the horn of the Rhino not on the mantelpiece. China wake up, when you have killed all the animals off, what will you do then?????????
Winward1
11th Nov 2016
0
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If I want to see Ivory, I will go & look at a beautiful elephant, they deserve complete protection, I love elephants . . . 😉
ElaineHermolle
9th Nov 2016
1
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I liked ivory carvings as a child. Now when I see it I see the blood and suffering and greed involved and it has completely spoiled the beauty. If there were beautifully carved items carved from the bones of human murder victims I think the same would apply.
thefilthycripple
4th Nov 2016
2
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There is no point in destroying antique ivory as much of it are beautiful works of art ,you cannot undo history . This clown cook ignores the real issue which is the Chinese insatiable appetite for Ivory . If he wants to make a difference camp out on Beijing and preach to them ,but that requires guts . Personally I am fed up with "luvvies " with no qualifications telling us how to live our lives
Wilf
5th Nov 2016
4
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Not sure if you saw the programme but Cook is far from a clown a very bright guy I think and prepared to stand up for a just cause. He did go to China and saw the governments campaign out there to try and stop the trade as well. What all governments need to do is have a total ban on all Ivory and showing it all. If China and Vietnam joined in and the EU did as well as USA we may well stop this terrible issue
ElaineHermolle
9th Nov 2016
1
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There are very clever fakers of antiques! It is very difficult to tell the difference, as you can't hallmark ivory. When there is money to be made you can't trust humans.
Goodeone
4th Nov 2016
4
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I hate cruelty and a great deal of cruelty is involved in Ivory. There is the death of the animal and the loss of baby elephants mothers. The UK is supposed to be a nation of animal lover's but the fact we sell lvory makes a mockery of that idea.
JohnHerb
4th Nov 2016
3
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I love Elephants and Rhinos and we should stop this slaughter now. Major governments should treat it like the drugs trade and really clamp down on it. That means the UK Government should stop all trade in Ivory immediately and also give much much more financial help to stop the killing and smuggling of Ivory. Looks like the message is getting through slowly but we need to act now.
jeanmark
3rd Nov 2016
6
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I have just signed a UK Government and Parliament petition asking them to shut down the domestic ivory market in the UK. The more signatures they receive the more likely they will respond.
Wilf
3rd Nov 2016
2
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What the link on that please Jean
2
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jeanmark
3rd Nov 2016
2
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Thank you, I always forget links...
Jo Kingham
2nd Nov 2016
5
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I didn't see the programme but agree with the principles we should support the ban that makes absolute sense. How much £ we should throw at it I'm not sure as I agree with Lionel the sales will just shift elsewhere. It needs to be a worldwide effort.
ElaineHermolle
9th Nov 2016
1
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You have to start somewhere. I personally would not buy it, or anything that incorporates it, just out of personal conviction.
Alicia
2nd Nov 2016
5
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We should never have sold ivory and elephants should not be killed for the ivory either.
Lionel
1st Nov 2016
5
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I really don't have time for these celebrity chefs. Usually, they're such vacuous creatures and so boring.

Yet this is just one celebrity chef who is seemingly coming good. Whilst I didn't see the programme I do know something of the back story.

In considering the suffering and mutilation of these creatures no one in an humane frame of mind may say this trade may continue. Yet the only way to stop it is at the source.

If Britain bans the sale of ivory other countries will take up the slack. No change.

There must be a concerted international effort to eradicate ivory poachers, by whatever means necessary, or else we will lose yet another species of animal. A most noble animal of as yet unplumbed depths.

For those who have ivory in their homes, you have blood on your hands! Perhaps at one or two removes, but blood sticks none the less. Burn it so it can't be sold on. Expunge the guilt.
Wilf
1st Nov 2016
7
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You should have watched the programme Lionel it was horrifying that such stunning creatures are being killed in this way for nothing. It is really bad. Hugh did a good job. I have a lot of time for him. he needs to stop being a chef and get on with his great job of championing animal subjects like this one. I agree with you STOP all ivory sales and you are right if the Brits stop then other countries will clamp down. So what is Andrea Leadsom doing then - nothing by the sound of it just making excuses. Why do they not have an outright ban!!!
Lionel
1st Nov 2016
3
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Wilf, in answer to your question, what is Andrea Leadsom doing ... beggar all! Read that as you wish!

In the latter part of a long and heated debate on SS before the referendum I said we should demand a clear out of all current politicians and at the very least the top third of the Civil Service. That view found favour with almost no one.

And now we have a former candidate for Prime Minister, currently in a fairly junior role, who cannot discern public opinion and act on it.

I rest my case.
Wilf
2nd Nov 2016
5
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Totally agreed Lionel-she belongs in a local council and is just a cracked record and windbag. Sure the vast majority of Brits would want to ban ivory
Lionel
2nd Nov 2016
2
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Wilf, my wife was, in the latter part of her working life, in Local Government - sadly the only job she could get.

I met a good few local councillors and they show Leadsom as an intellectual pigmy. Some of the UKIP councillors and the Independents are magnificent servants of the public.

Please, Wilf, with the deepest of respect for your mostly quite right opinions, let's not queer the pitch with a Leadsom. Let's hang on to what good there is.
Wilf
1st Nov 2016
4
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What is the British Government doing? I vote Tory and I am ashamed of them. They said they would ban all exports and sales of ivory in 2015 and now Mrs Leadsom the minister is waffling and giving the standard politicians drivil when asked on TV to explain why they will keep sales of "Pre 1947" ivory. I saw her on the Brexit discussions with Boris and thought she was quite good. Wrong! She made my blood boil-no guts and hopeless politicians in this country as per usual. BAN all ivory sales immediately! SPEND much more money in Africa on preventing poaching. In the first programme they showed the security at the port of Mombasa to stop poached ivory. It was a joke and a farce. What on earth is the government of Kenya doing? They need to sack the port security and put decent people in there. As for China and Vietnam they should ban all use and sale immediately just like the UK. they would get a lot of friends all round the world by doing this. President Xi is cutting corruption and good for him. He should help to stamp out this evil trade!
Lionel
2nd Nov 2016
3
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I can only repeat, Wilf, clear out Westminster, Whitehall and at least the top third of the Civil Service. Oh, and deny them their gold plated pensions.
Wilf
2nd Nov 2016
3
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I totally agree Lionel and when you see that 150 Tory MPs have voted to get Keith Vaz on a Justice Committee you have to seriously wonder what universe these people live in!
Lionel
2nd Nov 2016
2
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Wilf, that was a quick turn around! Only just posted that one.

There is a post above that which just bring a smile. I hope so. It is awaiting approval at the moment.
Lionel
2nd Nov 2016
3
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Again, I expect the red arrow but it needs to be said.

If our politicians and leaders have scant personal morality then, most assuredly, that will translate directly into their political lives. Therefore ...

How may we expect anything other than gross corruption from a largely corrupt assembly?
Wilf
2nd Nov 2016
3
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agreed...its a sad state of affairs
ElaineHermolle
9th Nov 2016
1
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There is something we can all do. Stop buying imports from China and Vietnam. And sign petitions to these governments to tell them so. Money is all that counts to most governments.
MrsPat
1st Nov 2016
6
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Yes Yes and Yes!!!. I saw the programmes with Hugh and they were both interesting and informative. We need to stop this now. I though Prince William made some interesting comments about trying to educate people in China to stop wanting to buy ivory. He mentioned a similar campaign to stop people wanting sharks fin soup and now not so many are being killed (but in all fairness far to many millions still are). Its a beautiful world with amazing and gentle creatures like elephants and rhinos please please let us stop this senseless killing.
Lionel
2nd Nov 2016
2
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MrsPat, I couldn't agree more, it is a beautiful world.

I've spent half of my working life on farms and almost all of it living in remote British areas. Watching the dawn at four a.m., the sunset just before going to bed. I'd bore you if I went on.

But, I say again, I agree with you completely.

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