Gaborone - Rhino poaching has reached "unprecedented" levels in the southern African nation of Botswana this year, authorities said Wednesday.
In the past six months alone, nine rhinos were killed for their horns, said environment minister Alice Mmolawa, calling the numbers "deeply worrying."
"Rhino poachers it seems have now turned their attention to Botswana," Mmolawa added.
Botswana, where rhino poaching has been minimal up until now, is regarded as a safe haven for the pachyderms.
In 2016 only one of the nation's 400 rhinos was poached, while in 2017 no rhino was killed.