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Forestry authority urges wildlife protection efforts


09:37, November 30, 2012

BEIJING, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- China's State Forestry Administration on Thursday urged intensified efforts to protect wild animals and crack down on illegal wildlife hunting and trading.

Local governments must step up efforts to protect wildlife resources by strengthening the patrolling of wildlife habitats and strictly penalizing activities including the hunting, selling, purchasing and transporting of wild animals, Zhang Jianlong, deputy head of the administration, said at a meeting.

Illegal wildlife hunting and trade have been rampant in some parts of the country in recent months, threatening wildlife populations and triggering complaints from domestic wildlife advocacy groups.

The administration has sent six work teams in recent months to oversee major cases and help local authorities launch wildlife protection campaigns, Zhang said.

Governments at all levels should strengthen the monitoring of restaurants, hotels and wild animal markets, and enhance cooperation with local customs agencies to combat wildlife trafficking, according to the official.

The administration also asked local authorities to increase publicity to raise people's awareness on wild animal protection.

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