The European Parliament on February 24 hosted a discussion on trophy hunting and the European Union. The discussion in Brussels concluded that Europe needs to be a key player in the fight against wildlife crime globally, as well as some calling for a complete ban on trophy hunting imports into the EU or for current legislation to be tightened.
“Species such as lions, and elephants are targeted by hunters and unfortunately their remains end up in the European Union as trophies,” said British MEP Neena Gill. “Their decline in recent years has been noted by the public especially since such upsetting incidents like the death of Cecil the Lion in Zimbabwe last year.
“Europe is a major importer of hunting trophies, and more needs to be done to prevent unnecessary killing,” she added. “Conservation efforts must be proved and the welfare of these iconic animals guaranteed.”
Also addressing the European Parliament, Mark Jones, expert and wildlife programmes manager, said: “Trophy hunting takes valuable individuals out of endangered populations, and the money generated rarely if ever benefits local communities or conservation programmes. Our diminishing wildlife needs to be protected, not sold off to the highest bidder so it can be brutally slaughtered.”
Meanwhile, Gill and other MEPs launched a written declaration to raise the issue to a higher level, and encourage further scrutiny of the current laws and legislation surrounding trophy hunting, and the imports of trophies.-NewEurope