Why the ban on the ivory trade isn’t working

Record numbers of elephants are being slaughtered to feed a £12bn ivory trade – which in turn fuels crime and armed strife. Why isn’t the ban working? Simon Wilson reports.

How old is the ivory trade?

Almost as old as civilisation itself. For millennia humans have used ivory for jewellery, decoration, embellishment, carvings, sculpture and paintings.

In Ancient Greece and Rome the use of ivory was widespread. By about AD 1000 ivory hunters had already wiped out elephants from North Africa; it took until the 19th century to do the same in much of southern Africa.

Throughout the [...]

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