Ekuatorial

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Minister of Environment and Forestry to audit permits on wildlife ownership

May 08, 2015

Jakarta, Ekuatorial — After recent massive illegal wildlife trading busts, Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya Bakar said that there will be audit on permits for wildlife, in Jakarta, on Thursday (7/5).

“We encourage law enforcement against illegal wildlife trading, especially those with bad treatments. The ministry is currently preparing for audits on wildlife permits, which consist of management, conservation, distribution and trading,” she said commenting on recent bust of 21 sulphur-crested Cockatoos stuffed in 1,500 ml plastic water bottles in Surabaya, East Java, early this month.

Previously, Minister Siti also stated that sanctions against illegal wildlife trading was still too weak to produce deterrent effect as she destroyed 5 tons of pangolins confiscated in Medan, North Sumatra.

Irma Hermawati, law enforcement and legal adviser, Wildlife Conservation Society Indonesia Program (WCS IP), agreed on the audit because wildlife ownership was mostly disregarded despite of the law.

“The law states sanction for ownership but usually they just hand over the animals,” said Hermawati.

In addition, she said that more often than not, official conservation institutions or breeding centers were involved in the illegal trading.

“Their mode of operations usually hunt animals from the wild not from breeding. When asked, they couldn’t show the studbook,” she said adding that there was lack of control on the permit.

Furthermore, she said that the ministry should also be aware on the wildlife illegal ownership, especially in form of community.

“Recently, communities of animal lovers are increasing, for instance eagle communities. If one man owns an eagle, that means 30 members own at least 30 eagles. People then get wrong impression that domesticating eagles are macho, as a result, demands for eagles will be increasing hence more people will hunt them,” she said adding that online wildlife trading has also been very popular recently. Fidelis E. Satriastanti.

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