Ask for new EU Legislation banning imports of lion hunting trophies – in Cecil’s memory

Ask for new EU Legislation banning imports of lion hunting trophies - in Cecil's memorytarget: European Parliament

Zimbabwe’s most well–known and much–photographed black–maned lion, affectionately named Cecil, was killed by sport hunters last week. This lion, whose head and skin were removed, is only one of about 200 such lion ‘trophies’ that hunters legally import to the EU each year. Germany, France and Spain are the biggest importers.

What makes conservationists particularly angry is the fact that around 80 percent of these lions were killed in what is known as “canned hunts.” These lions are raised in captivity, then released in enclosures with the sole purpose of becoming easy targets for foreign tourists armed with guns.

Australian environment minister Greg Hunt has banned all lion trophy imports to end “the barbaric practice of canned hunting.” Now, several groups are asking the European Commission to do the same. All lion trophy imports to the EU need to be banned immediately.

Lions are classed as vulnerable in the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s red list of endangered species, and critically endangered in western Africa due to over–hunting and a scarcity of prey.

Keith Taylor, Green Party MEP for south-east England, said, “It’s outrageous that lions are being killed just so someone in Europe can decorate their home with the body parts. The European commission must immediately impose an EU ban on all imports of lion body parts”.

Please sign the petition in memory of a handsome and friendly lion, Cecil.

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