700 kg of elephant tusks, rhino horns seized in Vietnam

By Van Tien, Thanh Nien News

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Elephant tusks in a container of jade rough in Tien Sa port, Da Nang City. Photo: Nguyen Tu Elephant tusks in a container of jade rough in Tien Sa port, Da Nang City. Photo: Nguyen Tu

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Custom officers in Vietnam on Wednesday seized more than 700 kg (1,500 pounds) of rhino horns and elephant tusks hidden in a ship from Mozambique.
The smuggled animal parts were hidden in two containers on board the Liberian-flagged ship King Brian, which arrived at Tien Sa Port in Da Nang City on Monday.
The rhino horn chunks weigh 142 kg and the elephant tusks, 603 kg, according to the port's Customs Office.
The two containers were registered as "rough jade" and destined for Da Nang-based Van An Company.
Further investigation is underway.

Earlier on Wednesday, custom officers in Hanoi's Noi Bai seized 100 kg of what they believed to be ivory and rhino horns that arrived in a flight from Africa.
The rising trade of rhino horns and elephant tusks is pushing the two giant animals to the verge of extinction, and Vietnam has faced criticism from international conservation groups for being a big part of it.
Vietnam government bans the import of ivory and rhino horns and the commercial use of the parts, but that has not effectively stopped the widespread belief in their medicinal effects despite the lack of adequate scientific evidence.
Many also flaunt the parts as a status symbol.

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