Trump Puts Big-Game Trophy Decision on Hold

Posted November 19, 2017

Unimpressed by President Donald Trump's sudden backtracking on his proposed elephant-trophy ban, elephants from Zimbabwe and Zambia released a scathing official statement on Saturday, ominously warning Trump, "We don't forget".

The decision was announced on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's site in a statement that argued that "African elephant trophy hunting in Zimbabwe will enhance the survival of the species in the wild".

"They pay loads of money to pick from a menu of what animals they want to kill and a guide basically takes them right to it - zero bravery and not much actual skill involved".

In a rare about-face, US President Donald Trump has carried out an abrupt policy U-turn on the importation of big-game animal parts from Zimbabwe after a storm of public outrage.

"President Trump and I have talked, and both believe that conservation and healthy herds are critical", Zinke said.

Obama imposed the ban to help save elephant and lion populations in Zimbabwe and Zambia.

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On Friday, the administration put its decision on hold.

Wayne Pacelle, the CEO of the Humane Society of the United States, said on Twitter that he was grateful that Trump was reviewing the decision to lift the trophy ban. The animals are listed in the Endangered Species Act, which requires the U.S. government to protect endangered species in other countries. "Furthermore, I am not convinced that elephant populations in the area warrant overconcentration measures".

Illicit demand for elephant ivory has led to devastating losses from illegal poaching as the natural habitat available for the animals to roam has also dwindled by more than half. "Thank you!" Trump tweeted.

As a result, the number of African elephants has shrunk from about five million a century ago to about 400,000 remaining. "This is the kind of trade we don't need".

Despite the outcry and Trump's stated reversal, the global affairs page of the US Fish and Wildlife Service still - as of Saturday morning local time - says it will issue permits for importing big game animal parts.