Donald Trump lifts ban on importing elephant hunt trophies from Zimbabwe and Zambia

By Chris Baynes

Donald Trump‘s administration is to allow the remains of endangered elephants legally hunted in two African countries to be imported to the US, reversing a ban introduced by Barack Obama.

The US government has scrapped regulations which forbid elephant trophies being brought into the country from Zimbabweand Zambia, arguing hunting could help conservation efforts.

The Obama administration banned imports of trophies from Zimbabwe in 2014 after finding the nation’s management of legal hunting did not “enhance the survival of the African elephant the wild”.

The species is listed as “threatened” under the US Endangered Species Act and importing African elephant ivory to America is banned unless certain conditions are met.

But the US Fish and Wildlife Service, announcing the lifting of the ban in Zimbabwe and Zambia, said money raised through hunting permits could boost conservation efforts. “Legal, well-regulated sport hunting as part of a sound management programme can benefit the conservation of certain species by providing incentives to local communities to conserve the species and by putting much-needed revenue back into conservation,” a spokesman said.

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