China under pressure to continue ban on tiger trade
Beijing (PTI): Animal conservationists have stepped up their campaign with renewed calls to the Chinese government to continue with its 15-year-old moratorium on the trade in tiger parts, warning that lifting of the ban would be “disastrous” for the big cats.
In their latest effort, the “Save the Tiger Fund” conducted a poll, with findings that 95 per cent across the country supported the tiger-trade ban, imposed in 1993.
Tiger bone is used in traditional Chinese medicine and wine made from its blood is believed to give potency while its skin is highly valued in Tibet, making the trade in tiger products a big money spinner for poachers in China, India, Nepal and Bangladesh.
Ever since China banned harvesting of tiger bones in 1993, conservationists and tiger-trade lobby have locked horns over the issue.
The pro-tiger trade insists parts of the dead captive- bred tigers should be used citing its medicinal use but conservationists want the government to halt captive breeding itself.
In the poll, 95 per cent backed the ban, while more than 77 per cent said the ban was important for China’s image. Almost 95 per cent said they would abstain from the use of tiger products to save the big cats, Xinhua news agency said.
“The results… present the strikingly clear message that most Chinese people care so much about wild tigers that they are willing to change behaviour that threaten the survival of tigers in the wild,” Judy Mills of the organisation was quoted as saying.
News Update Service
Monday, January 28, 2008 : 1320 Hrs
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