Cape Town - Vietnam and Mozambique have been given a year to clean up their acts with regard to rhino poaching or face possible international trade sanctions.
And South Africa and Mozambique have also been given a year to enhance bilateral co-operation with each other and their respective neighbouring states, as a way of boosting current anti-poaching efforts and curbing the trade in rhino horn.
The Kruger National Park, on the border with Mozambique, is being called “the epicentre of rhino killing”.
A fourth country, Laos, on Vietnam’s western border, is also in the anti-poaching spotlight, as officials from the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) have been instructed to look for funding to send a technical mission there to check enforcement measures to combat the illegal wildlife trade, particularly in rhino horns.
These were among the final decisions being made at the 16th Conference of Parties (COP16) of Cites, attended by 179 signatory countries and drawing to a close in Bangkok. The convention allows for tough trade sanctions on member states who do not adhere to decisions.