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Regional Report On The Nexus Between Poaching And Proliferation Of Illicit Small Arms And Light Weapons (Central African Republic, Democratic Republic Of Congo, Kenya, Uganda And Tanzania)
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Regional Report On The Nexus Between Poaching And Proliferation Of Illicit Small Arms And Light Weapons (Central African Republic, Democratic Republic Of Congo, Kenya, Uganda And Tanzania)

 

Poaching in Africa is currently at a crisis level with more elephants being poached and the risk of extinction more imminent. It is estimated that close to 30,000 elephants, get poached every year in Africa. If no comprehensive and coordinated action is taken, elephants could soon be extinct. Poaching is used in this study to mean illegal hunting or killing of wildlife for extraction of trophies for sale.

The primary objective of this study was to examine the nexus between proliferation of illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) and poaching, and the impact of the two on development and livelihoods. The research was conducted in the Central Africa Republic (CAR), Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Kenya,Tanzania and Uganda. This report combines the findings from the five countries of study while highlighting manifestations, drivers and impact of poaching, the proliferation of illicit SALW, outlining some existing interventions against poaching and makes various recommendations.

The study revealed that elephants and rhinos are the most poached animals and various actors are involved at local, national, regional and international levels. The lead drivers of poaching were identified as: the proliferation of illicit SALW, porous borders, poverty and exclusion from economic grid, increased global demand for wildlife products and weak legislation and enforcement.

Poaching and proliferation of illicit SALW have had far reaching environmental, political, economic and social impacts. With this realization, various actors at the national, regional and international have put in place measures to address these challenges. However, there are gaps and limitations in legislation, SALW arms control, inter-agency and inter-state collaboration and end-market demand reduction.

The study therefore recommend among others the reduction in the proliferation of illicit SALW, capacity building for law enforcement agencies, dealing with end market users and provision of alternative livelihood for communities living around wildlife protected areas.

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