Target: President of China Xi Jinping
Goal: Punish Chinese officials who were caught buying ivory in Africa
China is known as one of the biggest buyers of ivory, and these purchases are what fuels the illegal wildlife trade. It’s led to the massive decline of elephants in Africa, all because of misguided beliefs about medicine. Recently, a report claimed that Chinese officials bought ivory while visiting Tanzania, thereby doubling the price for ivory and sending more elephants to their deaths. Urge President Xi Jinping to punish those responsible for fueling the illegal ivory trade.
In many Asian countries, elephant tusks are regarded as good luck charms and used for medicinal purposes. With modern weapons being easily accessible, African poachers have taken to killing elephants and selling them for massive profits. Research has shown that Asian countries are the biggest buyers in this market, but new evidence from the Environmental Investigation Agency shows that even Chinese politicians and officials are taking part.
In 2013, President Jinping visited Tanzania and researchers noticed a spike in ivory prices. Two weeks before the president arrived, ivory prices had doubled. Buyers had to pay $700 for a kilo of ivory. Many of the ivory items in these markets were cleared out by the time the president left the country. Video footage caught the Chinese navy purchasing ivory, with one businessman making $50,000 on one sale. The report highlights a very grim reality–corruption is rife in China’s political sphere.
Elephants are dying because poachers want to make money off of their tusks. Africa needs these animals to keep the ecosystem healthy and thriving. We must beseech President Jinping to punish those who were involved in these transactions.
Dear President Xi Jinping,
A report released by the Environmental Investigation Agency has revealed to the world the corruption that is rife in your government. Killing elephants, along with buying or selling ivory is illegal, and yet there are Chinese officials who participate in this trade. Please know that this participation is whittling down the elephant population. These animals are endangered and will continue to be if poaching isn’t stopped.
I urge you to punish the individuals that purchased ivory, even if it means giving them a fine or a demotion. Elephants are in a precarious situation thanks to humans and I ask that you educate your officials as to why this is the case.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Brian Snelson via Wikimedia Commons