Singapore destroys 8 tonnes of illegal ivory
Singapore authorities on Monday crushed and burnt almost eight tonnes of illegal elephant ivory confiscated over a period of two years.
Over 2,700 elephant tusks worth S$13 million ($9.6 million), were fed into an industrial rock crusher before incineration in a move authorities hope will deter smugglers.
This was the first time seized ivory had been destroyed in Singapore. Authorites said it wanted to “send a strong signal of Singapore’s zero tolerance on the use of the city-state as a conduit to smuggle endangered species and their parts”.
“The public destruction of ivory sends a strong message that Singapore condemns illegal wildlife trade. By crushing the ivory, we ensure it does not re-enter the ivory market,” said Desmond Lee, a senior minister of state in the interior and national development ministry.
“We will continue our enforcement efforts, to prevent Singapore from being used as a transit point.”
Much of the Ivory that was destroyed comes from a huge bust in May 2015 of about 4.6 tonnes of elephant tusks that came from Kenya en route to Vietnam. The tusks were declared as tea leaves.