Tanzania cancels decision to lift ban on wildlife exports

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Tanzania reversed its decision to lift a ban on wildlife exports on Sunday, after the move, announced on Saturday, triggered online backlash. The ban was imposed in 2016 to protect the country’s wild animals and birds who were illegally being shipped abroad.

On Saturday, wildlife authorities announced they would lift the ban for six months starting June 6 so traders could “clear stocks of animals” that they could not sell under the ban.

But a day later, Tourism Minister Pindi Chana reinstated the ban after many citizens called for the actual reason the government wanted to lift the ban. “There will be no exporting of live animals as we consult further and until the government decides otherwise,” Chana said.

“They say the Maasai are destructive, hence their forced eviction from Ngorongoro! If you ask me: They want the Maasai out of conservation areas so they can capture/export as they please – no prying eyes,” Maria Sarungi Tsehai said on Twitter.

The indigenous Maasai community lives in the Ngorongoro reserve but face eviction because authorities say their growing population threatens wildlife.

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