24th Mar 2007

WWF and tigers

Bên dưới là thư chính thức gửi Thủ tướng của liên danh 6 tổ chức quốc tế vế bảo tồn động vật hoang dã liên quan đến 41 con hổ ở Bình Dương với mục tiêu rất rõ: những con hổ này hoàn toàn không còn giá trị về mặt bảo tồn; bác chăn nuôi phải hầu tòa vì vi phạm pháp luật và để gửi một thông điệp mạnh mẽ đến tất cả các bạn đang nhăm nhăm mua và nuôi hổ trái phép.

H.E. Nguyen Tan Dung
Prime Minister
Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam
Ha Noi, Viet Nam

Dear Honourable Prime Minister,

This letter is intended to support you in addressing the difficult and high profile issue concerning the tigers that are being illegally kept in Binh Duong Province in southern Viet Nam. It represents the view of a significant number of conservation organisations working in Viet Nam including ENV, FFI, IUCN, TRAFFIC, WAR, and WWF and aims to help the Government by providing guidance concerning an appropriate conservation response to the plight of an endangered species.

With fewer than 100 wild tigers left in Viet Nam, and with threats such as habitat degradation and fragmentation, hunting, and trade pushing this animal close to extinction in Viet Nam, we believe it is critical that the Government uses this opportunity to send a very strong and clear message to the public, as well as the international community that Viet Nam is taking the necessary steps to protect this species. The public should be left without doubt that no-one should be allowed to keep tigers as pets or breed this endangered species, and that all effort should be focussed on the conservation of this animal in the wild.

Noting that international commercial trade in tigers is strictly prohibited under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) which Viet Nam ratified in 1994, and acknowledging that this species is protected under 1B of the Government Decree 32/2006/ND-CP, the above-listed organisations would like to highlight the following points:

– The founding stocks of the 41 tigers in Binh Duong Province are alleged to have been brought from Cambodia in violation of Decree No. 82/2006/ND-CP of August 10, 2006. Tigers are listed in CITES Appendix I which is implemented in Viet Nam by Decree No. 82/2006/ND-CP of August 10, 2006, which means that any such trade would contravene both international and national regulations.

– From the information available, it appears that the tigers are being kept illegally. Tigers are listed in Group IB of Decree 32/2006/ND-CP, which means that they may not be transported or stored without permission from MARD. Article 7 of Decree No. 32/2006 requires “sufficient papers” for “transportation and storage” of Group I animals to be legal.

– The argument that they are being bred for conservation purposes is not necessarily valid, because, to date, there have been no known successful introductions of captive tigers into the wild.

– The genetic origin of these tigers is not known and they are not part of the international tiger conservation breeding programme, thus for genetic conservation purposes these tigers have no genetic conservation value.

In view of these points, the signatories to this letter recommend the following measures (listed in order of priority):

1. As authorities have confirmed that the Law has been violated, those responsible for the illegal import of the tigers should be prosecuted and fined according to the provisions of Decree No. 82/2006/ND-CP and Decree No. 32/2006-ND-CP. If there have been criminal violations of these Decrees, the violators should be subject to criminal penalties as well.

2. While the courts retain the right to impose penalties in accordance with the relevant laws of Viet Nam, ideally and in addition to penalties, it is suggested that the tigers owners, if found guilty, should be made to cover the full cost of confiscating, placing and caring for the animals until their natural death.

3. All tigers should be confiscated and handed over to rescue centres or zoos that are equipped to handle these species particularly in light of the educational value they represent.

4. The above signatories will make every effort to assist the Government with placement of the confiscated tigers. One organisation has already expressed interest in supporting the construction and management of a new sanctuary to accommodate these animals. Support can also be provided in applying the IUCN Guidelines for Disposal of Confiscated Specimens as deemed necessary.

We hope that this information provides a sound and clear basis upon which the Government of Viet Nam can use in its decision-making process.

We would also like to draw your attention to the upcoming Global Tiger Forum Meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal. The main topics for discussion at this forum will be the continuation of the global ban on tiger products including the cessation in the growth in tiger breeding farms and the need for increased law enforcement effort.

By following the advice in this letter, Viet Nam would be sending a strong message to the global tiger conservation community that it is ready and willing to support tiger conservation issues. In doing this, we are confident that Viet Nam will receive international praise and support.

Lastly, it is important to re-emphasise that this represents an important opportunity to demonstrate that the illegal trade, purchase and keeping of protected animals will NOT be tolerated in Viet Nam. It is also an opportunity for Viet Nam to demonstrate to the global community that it is taking a strong stance on such issues and is prepared to take action.

We remain committed and prepared to provide further technical advice and support as required and we would like to thank the Government of Viet Nam for inviting the conservation community to engage in this debate.

Sincerely,

On behalf of WWF
Eric Coull
Representative
WWF Greater Mekong

On behalf
of TRAFFIC
Sulma Warne
Programme Coordinator
Greater Mekong Programme

On behalf of IUCN
Vu Van Trieu
Country Representative
IUCN Viet Nam

On behalf of WAR
Tim Knight
Head of Communications
Wildlife At Risk (WAR)

On behalf of FFI
Nguyen Bich Ha
Viet Nam Programme Manager
Fauna and Flora International

On behalf of ENV
Vu Thi Quyen
Founding President
Education for Nature

3 Responses to “WWF and tigers”

  1. hoaianh Says:

    G gio quan tam den nhung van de cap thiet qua nhi :D

  2. today20 Says:

    Đấy gọi là diversify interests ;))

  3. Nam Says:

    Sự phát triển và tiến bộ của một xã hội phụ thuộc vào tiến trình của cuộc chiến tranh bất tận với sự mù loà của quần chúng (luôn được lãnh đạo bởi báo chí và Cái mà ai cũng …có thể biết)

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