Wildlife conference bolsters protection for sharks and turtles

Wildlife conference bolsters protection for sharks and turtles

PANAMA CITY (AP) — An international wildlife conference has moved to enact some of the most important protections for shark species targeted in the fin trade and the dozens of turtles, lizards and frogs whose numbers are being decimated by the pet trade.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, known by its acronym CITES, ended Friday in Panama. In a record for the conference, delegates enacted protections for more than 500 species. The United Nations wildlife conference also rejected a proposal to reopen the ivory trade. An ivory ban was enacted in 1989.

“CITES Parties are fully aware of their responsibility to address the crisis of biodiversity loss by taking action to ensure that international trade in wildlife is sustainable, legal and traceable,” said Secretary General Ivonne. Higuero in a statement.

“Trade is the foundation of human well-being, but we need to repair our relationship with nature,” she said. “Decisions from this meeting will serve the interests of wildlife conservation and trade, which do not threaten the existence of plant and animal species in the wild, for future generations.”

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