Elephant poachers in the act shot dead by park rangers in Kenya
Jun 8, 2018
Gang members gunned down by officers during 'fierce shoot-out' at park on Ugandan border
Elephant poachers were shot dead by rangers as they tried to kill the animals at a national park in Kenya.See related âPoacherâ eaten by lions he was tracking
Wildlife troopers had been on a routine patrol at Mount Elgon National Park, which straddles the border of Kenya and Uganda, âwhen they encountered a gang of five men last Thursdayâ, reports The Independent.
The rangers, from the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) exchanged fire with the poachers, who were reportedly armed with AK-47 rifles.
Equipment associated with poaching was later found at the scene, the wildlife service said.
âKWS officers were on patrol inside the p ark when they spotted the poachers,â Trans Nzoia county police commander Samson ole Kine told Nairobi-based newspaper The Standard.
âA fierce shoot-out ensued and three of the poachers were gunned down while two others escaped. AK-47 rifles were recovered.â
Police county commissioner, Erastus Mbui, said authorities had stepped up security and surveillance operations along the Kenya-Uganda border to deter poachers.
âMore officers have been deployed to conduct regular security patrols at the park and ensure wildlife is protected from the poachers,â he said.
âWe urge communities around the park to report people they suspect to be on a poaching mission.â
Poaching has declined sharply in Kenya from a peak in 2012 but âit remains a problem, with some 69 elephants and nine rhinos killed last yearâ, says Metro. Despite a ban on the international trade in ivory in 1997, African elephants are still being poached in large numbers.
âTheir tusks are the most sought after, with the ivory being carved into ornaments and jewelleryâ, adds the paper.
China remains the biggest consumer market for the tusks.Source: Google News Kenya | Netizen 24 Kenya