H.E. Emmanuel Issoze-Ngondet, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Francophonie and Regional Integration of Gabon,
Ladies and gentlemen,
I am pleased to deliver this statement on behalf of H.E. Sam K. Kutesa, President of the General Assembly.
I would like to commend the delegations of Gabon and Germany and the many co-sponsors of the draft resolution A/69/L.80 for this important initiative and step forward in addressing the serious implications of illicit trafficking in wildlife.
The draft resolution calls for effective measures to prevent and counter the serious problem of crimes that have an impact on the environment, particularly illicit trafficking in wildlife and wildlife products.
It is essential to take decisive steps at the national level to prevent, combat and eradicate the illegal trade in wildlife, on both the supply and demand sides, including by strengthening the legislation necessary for the prevention, investigation and prosecution of such illegal trade. We also need to further strengthen regional and international cooperation to effectively deal with this challenge.
Illegal wildlife trafficking not only threatens species and eco-systems; it affects the livelihoods of local communities and diminishes touristic attractions.
It compromises efforts towards poverty eradication and the achievement of sustainable development.
Given the role of organised criminal networks, armed groups and even terrorist groups in illegal wildlife trafficking, this scourge also carries with it serious security implications for many countries and regions.
The adoption of this draft resolution today and its effective implementation will be crucial in our collective efforts to combat illicit trafficking in wildlife worldwide.
Thank you for your attention.