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Last year, the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force reported that a number of baby elephants aged two and five years old had been abducted from Hwange National Park. Earlier this year, twenty-four were shipped to China to perform circus-like acts for the public; 170 more are currently waiting to join them.

As justification, Zimbabwean lawmakers claim the elephants are disturbing their neighbors, eating too much food, and are a threat to the economy. To rectify these apparently horrendous crimes, the government has decided to sell the elephant calves into slavery — to live out the rest of their lives as objects of entertainment.

Each elephant is being sold by the Zimbabwean government for about $40,000 — a small price for the lives of some of the most caring sentient beings on the planet.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Secretariat has stated, "[T]he export would not be detrimental to the survival of the species in the wild." However, since the forest-dwelling and savannah elephants of Africa are still classified as a single species by the IUCN — despite evidence suggesting they are genetically distinct — the statement by CITES is based in conjecture and not fact.

Tell CITES Secretary-General John E. Scanlon to retract his approval of this trade, and postpone any decision on African elephants until the IUCN has re-evaluated the species status of African elephants.

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Dear Secretary-General Scanlon,

Thank you for the important work you do with regard to the conservation of endangered species. The CITES Secretariat has proven itself integral to the continued survival of earth's animals, making it one of the most important organizations currently in operation.

However, your recent decision to allow the capture, sale, and exploitation of nearly 200 Zimbabwean elephant calves has raised significant concern among conservationists. According to the CITES report on the decision, the move will not have a significant impact on the African elephant "species."

The Secretariat presumably reached this conclusion based on the IUCN's current assessment of the African elephant's conservation status. Yet the IUCN listing for Loxodonta africana also contains a taxonomic note: "Preliminary genetic evidence suggests that there may be at least two species of African elephant... [and a] third species... has also been postulated." The IUCN claims that more research is required before re-classification of the African elephant, and therefore the current assessment includes all elephant populations in Africa.

I understand that the large population size of Zimbabwean elephants can make it difficult to see how removing a couple hundred individuals would make a significant impact. However, the second-greatest threat to Zimbabwe's elephants after poachers is the misclassification, and subsequent misinterpretation of the existential danger these animals face.

Since we do not currently know how many of each species of African elephant currently live where, it is impossible to definitively say that relocating any will not endanger the survival of one species or the other. Therefore, I insist that you withdrawal your approval of the Zimbabwe government's sale of kidnapped baby elephants.

Not only is the enslavement of these calves ethically egregious, but (as far as we know) by allowing this travesty you may be facilitating the extinction of an entire species of elephant.

Thank you.

Petition Signatures


Jun 27, 2017 Denise Griffin Even one elephant being raised and then sent somewhere to be a "prisoner" is one too many.
Jun 27, 2017 Kim Thornadtsson
Jun 27, 2017 carol hawkins Please save these babies.
Jun 27, 2017 (Name not displayed) You wouldn't rip a child from their family to send them to preform in a circus. Elephants have feelings like humans. This is a terrible heartbreaking cruel thing to do that needs to be stopped immediately. We must protect them.
Jun 27, 2017 Wayne Gallas
Jun 27, 2017 James Green
Jun 27, 2017 Monika Dobo-Kohl This is ABUSE !!
Jun 27, 2017 Elizabeth Barrera
Jun 27, 2017 Marie-Jeanne Somville
Jun 27, 2017 Lee Fister
Jun 27, 2017 Achille Piccio
Jun 26, 2017 Laura Yamase
Jun 26, 2017 Mariana Sazonova Elephant calves are the same children as our children.
Jun 26, 2017 Stacey McRae
Jun 26, 2017 Elma Tassi
Jun 26, 2017 mary Kingren
Jun 26, 2017 Georgia Fizdale
Jun 26, 2017 M Huizinga
Jun 26, 2017 Linda Weaver
Jun 26, 2017 Melba Coker
Jun 26, 2017 Mary Anne Bauer
Jun 25, 2017 Sheri Gann
Jun 25, 2017 Sophia Aliaga These animals deserve FREEDOM! They don't deserve to be sold for "shows" HUMANS ARENT SOLD. So STOP SELLING WILD ANIMALS.
Jun 25, 2017 Mary Stratton
Jun 25, 2017 Diane Liptack
Jun 25, 2017 SHEILA KELL
Jun 25, 2017 AMBAR PEREZ
Jun 25, 2017 Dolors Salvo
Jun 25, 2017 Kathryn Mahoney
Jun 25, 2017 Elisabet Dale
Jun 25, 2017 joyce williams
Jun 25, 2017 karen williams
Jun 25, 2017 Marion Bennett
Jun 25, 2017 Kathleen Lawless
Jun 25, 2017 Ilona Bublicka
Jun 24, 2017 Gladys Sawyer
Jun 24, 2017 melinda themm We must protect the survival of this species. Please retract the approval of this trade.
Jun 24, 2017 SHIRLEY AUSTIN
Jun 24, 2017 julie roberts
Jun 24, 2017 Judy Dolan
Jun 24, 2017 Pamela Benavides
Jun 24, 2017 Diane Miller I think its time people who don't value all life need to start being used THE SAME WAY they use animals
Jun 24, 2017 Rose Saunders
Jun 24, 2017 Patricia Martin
Jun 24, 2017 Irene W. Dowdell
Jun 24, 2017 Linda Franzenbach
Jun 24, 2017 Barbara Owen
Jun 23, 2017 Deborah Scharf
Jun 23, 2017 Francis Robertson
Jun 23, 2017 Wendy Maltonic

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