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AMBOSELI NATIONAL PARK (Xinhua) -- A large male elephant grazing in the marshland at Amboseli National Park, Kenya. The World Elephant Day brings attention to the urgent plight of Asian and African elephants. XINHUA PHOTO - ZHANG WEIYI

Kenya Wildlife Service rolls out measures to conserve elephants

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) said on Sunday that it has taken several measures to protect and conserve elephants across the East African nation.

Acting KWS Directing General Charles Musyoki said the agency has improved engagement of communities living with elephants as active partners to elephant conservation through supporting community efforts to manage and benefit from wildlife.

Musyoki said KWS has enhanced capacity of law enforcement and wildlife protection agencies and increased global public awareness campaigns especially to the consumer countries against poaching and illegal trade in ivory.

"KWS in conjunction with other relevant agencies, both local and international, has taken several measures to protect and conserve the elephant, including enhanced inter-departmental collaboration in intelligence information gathering and sharing among key government departments, and the inclusion of elephant poaching and illegal ivory trade into the Agenda of the National Security Council," he said in a statement issued in Nairobi to mark World Elephant Day.

Musyoki said national elephant population in the country stood at 33, 948 as at end of 2017 in a range area of 139,344 Km2, noting this represents a 2.25 percent annual increase since 1989.

He attributed population and range increase to establishment of community conservancies in known elephant range areas and tolerance by communities living with elephants.

He said cross-border collaboration in information sharing and deployment of wildlife security patrols are among the measures KWS has taken to protect the elephant.

He also said the establishment of a DNA and forensic laboratory that has helped identify origin of seized ivory and isotopic analysis that provide admissible evidence in courts of law are also helping in elephant conservation.

             

 

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