‘They’re like the mafia’: the super gangs behind Africa’s poaching crisis

The Guardian
Nairobi, Kenya

A wildlife service officer holds one of the ivory tusks used as evidence in the case against Feisal Mohamed Ali (AFP/Getty Images)

Late on 6 June 2014 Kenyan police, acting on a tip-off, raided a used car lot in Mombasa’s industrial area. Inside Fuji Motors East Africa Ltd, in one of the lock-ups, they found two tonnes of ivory.

Days earlier a white Mitsubishi truck, its paperwork claiming “household equipment” but in fact carrying more than 300 elephant tusks secreted beneath a tarpaulin, had pulled into the yard on Mombasa Island’s dirty northern fringe, far from the tourist hotels and beaches for which the city is famous. Continue reading ‘They’re like the mafia’: the super gangs behind Africa’s poaching crisis

The downfall of Yang Fenglan, the “Ivory Queen”

New Statesman
Nairobi, Kenya

2016_22_ellieLate last year, a car chase through the streets of Dar es Salaam ended outside a blue art deco hotel when police officers rammed their car into another belonging to their suspect: a small, bespectacled Chinese woman in her mid-sixties. Continue reading The downfall of Yang Fenglan, the “Ivory Queen”

Tanzania to evict Maasai people in favor of fee-paying trophy hunters

GlobalPost
Nairobi, Kenya

Tens of thousands of Maasai people in northern Tanzania, under a new government plan, face eviction from their homes and a ban from the land their cattle have grazed for generations.

Tanzania says it will designate as a “wildlife corridor” a 600-square-mile patch of land next to the popular tourist attractions of the Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Continue reading Tanzania to evict Maasai people in favor of fee-paying trophy hunters

Serengeti highway ‘will bring migration of wildebeest to dead end’

The Times of London
Nairobi, Kenya

Wildebeest crossing a river in the Serengeti(Burrard-Lucas/Barcroft Media)
Wildebeest crossing a river in the Serengeti
(Burrard-Lucas/Barcroft Media)

The world’s biggest migration, in which almost two million animals stampede through the grass plains of the Serengeti in search of fresh grazing, is threatened by proposals to build a highway across their path.

Tanzania plans to build a 33-mile (53km) two-lane commercial highway through a narrow stretch of the Serengeti National Park, a World Heritage Site famed for its pristine environment and spectacular annual migration. Continue reading Serengeti highway ‘will bring migration of wildebeest to dead end’