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Cowboy answers the wild call

Not only in nuclear energy, the United States may now have a bigger role to play in tiger conservation.

india Updated: Mar 03, 2006 15:58 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent

Not only in nuclear energy, the US may even have a role to play in tiger conservation.

India on Thursday agreed to join the global Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking (CAWT) in coherence with its national legislations and conventions to which it is a signatory.

The CAWT, however, will help the two countries to jointly fight illegal trade in wildlife.

It was one of the highlights of the joint statement issued after talks between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President George W Bush.

In September 2005, the US announced CAWT to curb wildlife trafficking. Seven major USbased environment and business groups with global interests have joined the coalition.

It focuses on political and public attention on the growing threat to wildlife from poaching and illegal trade.

It is estimated that the global trade in animal, animal parts and exotic wildlife species accounts for over $10 billion.

Illegal wildlife trade is said to be closely associated with drugs and weapon trade and the need of the hour is a multilateral effort to tackle the issue.

While US, China and Europe are said to be the biggest markets of illegal trade in wildlife, the major source is from the Asian countries, including India.

CAWT was set up to combine initiatives of the countries tackling the problem in a more concerted manner.

The two countries also decided to use the opportunity to strengthen longstanding work together on the conservation of wildlife through co-operation on park management and eco-tourism.

India and US have been collaborating in wildlife conservation.

The US Fish and Wildlife Services have joint projects with the Wildlife Institute of India and the Bombay Natural History Society.

However, discussions between officials of the two countries have focussed on the exchange of officials in national parks and awareness promotion.

First Published: Mar 03, 2006 15:58 IST