Our campaign to highlight and address the threats facing the African lion took another big step forward recently when Linda McAvan, Labour MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber, lodged a written question to the European Commission.
Many of you have supported us by sending our specifically targeted letters to local MPs and MEPs. This is proving to be a very effective strategy and we would like more of you to come forward to help this effort. One such MP was the Rt Hon Ed Miliband who then expressed his interest in our cause. He in turn motivated his MEP, Linda McAvan to pose this question to the European Commission:
“Decline in Lion Population – Wildlife Trade Regulation”
A number of constituents have written to me regarding the decline in the African lion population. In the current Council Regulation 338/97 – the Wildlife Trade Regulation, it is my understanding that Lions are currently on Annex B, meaning the import of lion trophies are allowed with the allocation of permits. My constituent has brought to my attention that Lion Trophy hunting significantly reduces the populations of Lions in Africa.
In this light could the Commission clarify whether it plans to modify the status of the African Lion and include it in Annex A which would mean no further imports of Lion trophies?
Could the Commission also indicate what steps it has taken to address the threats facing the African Lion and to protect this species?”
Linda McAvan has now, at our behest, had a meeting with Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the South East Region, and both are waiting for the answer from the Commission before deciding on the next steps in this campaign.
Tomorrow we will talk with Catherine Bearder, Liberal Democrat MEP for South East England, in a conference call to Brussels. Hopefully she too is set to join with Linda and Keith in keeping up the pressure on the Commission.
We still need more of you to send our prepared letters to your MPs and MEPs. This campaign is really beginning to move, so it is a good time to add your shoulder to this gigantic wheel and help us get progress in both Westminster and Brussels!!!!
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