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Prince William slams 'despicable' poaching before talks

Published on Feb 13, 2014 6:13 AM
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, called on Feb 12, 2014, for the "despicable" illegal trade in elephants, rhinos and tigers to be stamped out. -- PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (AFP) - Britain's Prince William called on Wednesday for the "despicable" illegal trade in elephants, rhinos and tigers to be stamped out, ahead of an international conference to clamp down on poaching.

Representatives from 50 states have gathered in London for the talks, aimed at improving law enforcement in the - mainly African - countries where poaching is rife and stemming growing demand in Asia.

The London Summit on Illegal Wildlife Trade is being hosted by the British government and Princes Charles and William, who called it a turning point in the fight against trafficking.

"Tonight we are here with a single, shared purpose - to use our collective influence to put a stop to the illegal killing and trafficking of some of our world's most iconic and endangered species," he told guests at an evening reception. "Never before has a group like this come together - in these numbers - to stop the illegal trade in wildlife. All of us in this room have a duty to make sure that tomorrow, 13th February, is a date that marks the beginning of the end of this despicable trade."

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