International Fund for Animal Welfare

International Fund for Animal Welfare

June 05, 2007 16:35 ET

IFAW Investigation Results in International Ivory Trade Ban on eBay

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS--(Marketwire - June 5, 2007) - IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare - www.ifaw.org) applauds eBay international's decision to ban the international trade of elephant ivory on all of its sites around the globe.

This is the first-ever online international trade ban of elephant ivory.

Today's announcement follows an eight-country investigation by IFAW into ivory for sale on eBay sites, and face-to-face meetings between IFAW and eBay senior officials in Canada, the U.S. and across Europe.

The ban comes as more than 170 nations convene in The Hague for the 14th meeting of the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES) to consider a twenty-year elephant ivory trade moratorium.

In its survey carried out in February 2007, IFAW found that 94% of elephant ivory for sale on eBay sites was potentially illegal. The report also found that eBay policies varied from country to country and were often vague and not enforced.

Out of the eight countries examined in that report, Canada had the 2nd highest number of illegal ivory items.

"Literally thousands of ivory items were found on eBay Canada. We investigated 717 items, and found 627 were elephant ivory. 563 of theses items did not contain proper documentation and were potentially illegal ivory from poached elephants" said Crystal Childs, IFAW Canada Internet investigator.

In its announcement, eBay stated that in addition to the ban of international trade (trade between nations), clearer and stricter policies would be implemented on a national level for in-country trade.

Peter Pueschel, IFAW Head of Global Program Against Wildlife Trade, said: "This is fantastic news. eBay has today demonstrated true leadership and taken groundbreaking steps to protect elephants from the international illegal ivory trade. Enforcement is now critical. IFAW looks forward to working with eBay towards a total ban on trade in all animal ivory."

A full version of the IFAW report is available at: http://www.ifaw.org/ifaw/general/default.aspx?oid=210165

Editors: Fact sheets, still images and broadcast quality video b-roll related to the CITES meeting are available via www.thenewsmarket.com/ifaw To learn more about IFAW's global campaign to protect elephants from commercial trade, visit www.ifaw.org today.

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