Masisi Hits Back On Elephant 'Poaching' Frenzy

President Masisi addressing media about his China trip PIC. THALEFANG CHARLES
President Masisi addressing media about his China trip PIC. THALEFANG CHARLES

President Mokgweetsi Masisi has described as "hysteria, illogical and fatally flawed" attempts to link reports of alleged mass poaching of elephants in the Okavango Delta, to his decision to remove military grade weapons from the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (DWNP).

The global furore sparked by a BBC report into the alleged poaching broke last week while Masisi was in the middle of a landmark mission to China. Researchers claimed 87 elephants were recently killed in the Okavango Delta and blamed the disarmament of rangers. Government responded, insisting that only 53 carcasses had been found and most of these were natural deaths over a long period.

The researchers’ report provoked global outrage, with British PM, Theresa May weighing in to express her concern. Masisi returned on Saturday, marking a first by holding a briefing with journalists at the Sir Seretse Khama International Airport minutes after he landed.

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