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Last year, the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force reported that a number of baby elephants aged two and five years old had been abducted from Hwange National Park. Earlier this year, twenty-four were shipped to China to perform circus-like acts for the public; 170 more are currently waiting to join them.

As justification, Zimbabwean lawmakers claim the elephants are disturbing their neighbors, eating too much food, and are a threat to the economy. To rectify these apparently horrendous crimes, the government has decided to sell the elephant calves into slavery — to live out the rest of their lives as objects of entertainment.

Each elephant is being sold by the Zimbabwean government for about $40,000 — a small price for the lives of some of the most caring sentient beings on the planet.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Secretariat has stated, "[T]he export would not be detrimental to the survival of the species in the wild." However, since the forest-dwelling and savannah elephants of Africa are still classified as a single species by the IUCN — despite evidence suggesting they are genetically distinct — the statement by CITES is based in conjecture and not fact.

Tell CITES Secretary-General John E. Scanlon to retract his approval of this trade, and postpone any decision on African elephants until the IUCN has re-evaluated the species status of African elephants.

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Dear Secretary-General Scanlon,

Thank you for the important work you do with regard to the conservation of endangered species. The CITES Secretariat has proven itself integral to the continued survival of earth's animals, making it one of the most important organizations currently in operation.

However, your recent decision to allow the capture, sale, and exploitation of nearly 200 Zimbabwean elephant calves has raised significant concern among conservationists. According to the CITES report on the decision, the move will not have a significant impact on the African elephant "species."

The Secretariat presumably reached this conclusion based on the IUCN's current assessment of the African elephant's conservation status. Yet the IUCN listing for Loxodonta africana also contains a taxonomic note: "Preliminary genetic evidence suggests that there may be at least two species of African elephant... [and a] third species... has also been postulated." The IUCN claims that more research is required before re-classification of the African elephant, and therefore the current assessment includes all elephant populations in Africa.

I understand that the large population size of Zimbabwean elephants can make it difficult to see how removing a couple hundred individuals would make a significant impact. However, the second-greatest threat to Zimbabwe's elephants after poachers is the misclassification, and subsequent misinterpretation of the existential danger these animals face.

Since we do not currently know how many of each species of African elephant currently live where, it is impossible to definitively say that relocating any will not endanger the survival of one species or the other. Therefore, I insist that you withdrawal your approval of the Zimbabwe government's sale of kidnapped baby elephants.

Not only is the enslavement of these calves ethically egregious, but (as far as we know) by allowing this travesty you may be facilitating the extinction of an entire species of elephant.

Thank you.

Petition Signatures


Jul 25, 2017 Marina Batchaeva Marina Batchaeva
Jul 24, 2017 Linda Beach
Jul 24, 2017 Pamela Clark
Jul 24, 2017 Ana Guerra
Jul 24, 2017 L F
Jul 24, 2017 Michael Danziger
Jul 24, 2017 Deborah Boomhower
Jul 23, 2017 Angie Burch
Jul 23, 2017 Yola Stavridou Please stop the cruel abuse of these majestic, sentient creatures !
Jul 23, 2017 alan lane
Jul 23, 2017 Elizabeth Dideriksen Elephants are not entertainment. These babies need to stay with their mom's and family. China has no animal anti cruelty laws and has a history of egregious animal abuse.
Jul 23, 2017 (Name not displayed) stop the killing
Jul 22, 2017 Sandy Tesar
Jul 21, 2017 Bernd-Dieter Rosien
Jul 21, 2017 Heidemarie Rosien
Jul 21, 2017 Helena Miller An elephant is not a toy. It is a beautiful animal and people must should leave it alone.
Jul 21, 2017 yvonne fourgous
Jul 21, 2017 David Bentley
Jul 20, 2017 Stacia Pride Please Protect the Elephants & Do Not Sell Them to China!! Also Do Not Allow Them To Be Hunted or Poached!! Please Protect All the Wild Animals in Zimbabwe!!
Jul 20, 2017 Susan Bain
Jul 20, 2017 Tatiana Plakhova
Jul 20, 2017 Inga Frauke Majer
Jul 20, 2017 Jack Middour
Jul 19, 2017 Ada Saei
Jul 19, 2017 Lynette Nielsen
Jul 19, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Jul 19, 2017 elaine beard
Jul 19, 2017 Sherry McGregor Have you seen how these magnificent creatures are tortured for entertainment. Please stop this.
Jul 19, 2017 Robin Chakravarti God will punish you if you send his creatures for a lonely. painful life for the sake of money. Release the calves back to the wild.
Jul 19, 2017 Kelli Villis
Jul 19, 2017 RICKY SLOAN
Jul 19, 2017 Catherine D.
Jul 19, 2017 karin schneider
Jul 18, 2017 Deborah Papaleo
Jul 18, 2017 K Shiv
Jul 18, 2017 J Krishna
Jul 18, 2017 Linda Mattice
Jul 18, 2017 marlou wevers
Jul 18, 2017 pascale rodriguez
Jul 18, 2017 shirley robinson
Jul 18, 2017 p Burns Selling elephants is a crime because they don't belong to people who use them for greed. Let the elephants live and sell something that isn't alive to make your money ~
Jul 18, 2017 David Pedrero
Jul 18, 2017 Rae Fermor
Jul 18, 2017 VICKY ANASTOPOULOU
Jul 18, 2017 Helena Freeman
Jul 18, 2017 Mercedes Ante
Jul 18, 2017 Amy Alvarado
Jul 18, 2017 Carole Divine-Snowney
Jul 18, 2017 Margarida Rapoula
Jul 18, 2017 Devin Miller

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