Sri Lanka to deploy 4,500 development officers to safeguard elephants

(Xinhua) 09:48, March 12, 2024

COLOMBO, March 11 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka will deploy 4,500 development officers to support elephant conservation efforts, a minister told a news conference held at the Presidential Media Center on Monday.

Minister of Wildlife and Forest Resources Conservation Pavithra Wanniarachchi said that the main tasks of these officials would be to protect the elephant fences that have been built by the government.

The ministry of finance has approved the deployment of these officials, she said.

Wanniarachchi said the International Day of Forests falls on March 21, and they have organized an initiative where a plant will be distributed to each household across the island.

She added that the demarcation of forest boundaries is to be completed in 2024.

The above activity is a part of the project aimed at increasing the country's forest coverage to 32 percent of the total land area, she said.

According to official data, about 400 elephants have died in 2023, and about half of the deaths have occurred due to human-elephant conflicts.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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