Ukraine’s participation in the Conference meeting of Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which takes place from 17 to 28 August in Geneva (Switzerland), is an important step towards combating international animal illegal trade. Oleksandr Feldman, President of the World Open Foundation for Animal Rehabilitation and Reintroduction (WOFARR) stated on this issue. According to him, the fact that global problem of illegal rare animal species trade has been given priority by the current Ukrainian authorities suggests positive changes in our society.
“Poaching and the related illegal sale of wild animals, as well as materials of zoological origin (horns, beavers, skins, etc.) is causing enormous damage to the biodiversity of our planet. The scale and consequences of this transnational criminal activity require consolidated response of the international community – Mr. Feldman told. – Here, the responsible approach of every state is important, including Ukraine, which ratified CITES in 1999. For this purpose, it is necessary not only to improve legislation, but also to form public opinion, to conduct information work with Ukrainians.”
He also stressed that Feldman Ecopark has participated and will continue to participate actively in this work.
The number of visitors to the Social and Humanitarian Multi-Complex, one of the most important functions of which is preservation of rare and endangered species, exceeds 1 million people per year. This gives us a unique opportunity to convey important information on combating international animal illegal trade to a large number of people, to promote initiatives related to CITES, – Oleksandr Feldman reminded. – We cooperate with many international environmental organizations, such as EAZA and ERAZA, develop a number of educational, eco-public projects. We are able and we will use the lessons learned to develop our own initiatives to prevent poaching and illegal animal trafficking. We already have some developments in this direction related to the reduction of demand for such activities and the formation of public opinion.”
It should be noted that the 18th Conference meeting of Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) is held in Geneva, Switzerland, from 17 to 28 August. President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky authorized Volodymyr Domashlynets, the head of the profile department of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources to participate in the negotiations and decision-making of this event. Participants are considering proposals for changes to the trade regulation regime for more than 500 species of wild flora and fauna. Combating illegal trade, as well as the call of members of the European Parliament and environmental organizations to outlaw trophy hunting, are important issues on the agenda.