Face of the Day


President Kenyatta sets fires to biggest stockpile of ivory tusks ever destroyed, in statement against ivory trade.

Kenya’s president has set fire to 105 tonnes of elephant ivory and more than 1 tonne of rhino horn, in a statement against the trade in ivory and products from endangered species.

Uhuru Kenyatta put a flame to the biggest of 11 pyres of ivory tusks and one of rhino horn in a chilly afternoon on Saturday.

“This is the largest stockpile destroyed in Africa,” said Al Jazeera’s Catherine Soi, reporting from Nairobi.

“The message here is that elephants are worth more alive than dead … This ivory is not all from Kenya. Some of it has been intercepted while in transit from other African countries,” she said.


Ben Curtis/AP


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  • Sailor Sam

    But the elephants that these tusks came from are still dead though.
    An empty gesture.
    Would have been better for the Kenyan economy for that ivory to have been used beneficially.

    • sonovaMin

      I agree it just makes the ivory more valuable – a shortage has that effect. Better to stockpile it, then release a huge amount onto the market to create a glut. This would give the remaining unfortunate elephants a bit of breathing space.
      The money received would go to fund increased anti poacher patrols.

  • intelligentes candida diva

    A bold move to emphasise the message more valuable alive than dead..

    Being animal lover I believe self gratifying humans will continue to pursue poaching killing & satiating their desires at animals expense.

  • andrewo

    In the 60’s his mother was the kingpin in the Kenyan poaching industry.

    • MaryLou

      All the better to see then, that the son isn’t taking the same stance!

      • Evan

        Really? I’d say he just managed to force the price of ivory up and make it even more attractive to poachers

        • MaryLou

          I’d say selling it would have been more likely to do that. It’s been confiscated and burnt. Even better would’ve been the public trial and shaming of the middlemen or poachers or whoever it as confiscated from. Or maybe do like the Israelis, and bulldoze their houses. I don’t know, in a place where life is as hard as it is in many African areas, it’s hard to come up with a meaningful punishment that isn’t over the top. A fine wouldn’t mean much. A stint in prison probably wouldn’t mean much. Death penalty probably too much. Really has to be a consumer-led fix I think.

          • Evan

            Yes, having a larger supply always makes the price go up…..think Houses, Auckland, to see the problem with what you think.

  • Chris Fleming

    Would have been better to set alight some of the Poachers.

    • [MOD] Agree, but it’s against the moderation rules to say so.