On September 22, World Rhino Day, the WWF brought together government representatives from Vietnam and South Africa.
The aim of this meeting is to cushion the killing of rhinos in South Africa, mainly due to a myth that rhino horn linked to cancer cure.
The illegal trade in rhino horn has claimed the lives of thousands of these animals, so much so that in Vietnam and was extinguished the last Javan rhino left in the country and throughout the Asian continent there are only 200 copies.
In the first half of 2012 and reported 400 rhinos were killed by what authorities are directed to reformulate mediated protection to this species.
“Rhino horns have no place in a wall or in a pharmacy. Belong to their natural habitat,” said Laura Stone, Economic Adviser of the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi. “World Rhino Day is a great opportunity to dispel myths about the medicinal properties of rhino horn.”
According to the study The nexus of trade in rhino horn South Africa – Vietnam: A deadly combination of institutional failure, corruption and organized crime, with the growing demand from Asia, people are willing to pay the price it takes to get their hands the prized rhino horn. Similarly, the lack of institutional and police control, and administrative corruption, are a combination of factors has created a “perfect storm” for rhino poaching and trade in their horns.
“The web of complicity includes hunting ranch owners, professional hunters, veterinarians, police officers and corrupt rulers,” said Jo Shaw, author of the report.
In this regard, in April 2012, South Africa stopped issuing hunting licenses to all Vietnamese citizens, and passed a law that punishes with prison who kill a rhino.
Three of the five rhino species are listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.
The rhinos of Java and Sumatra are two of the most endangered animals in the world, in the list of 100 most endangered species extinction, published by the Zoological Society of London and IUCN. There are fewer than 50 Javan rhinos remaining, all in an Indonesian national park. Sumatran rhinos live in a few scattered areas across Sumatra and Borneo, and their number does not exceed 200.