Accessibility links

Breaking News

US, South Africa Launch Taskforce on Wildlife Trafficking

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa and U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announced plans Wednesday to form a task force that will combat the financing of wildlife trafficking.

The task force will combat illicit finance linked to illegal wildlife trade in three key areas, a statement from the U.S. Treasury Department said.

These include sharing financial red flags linked to wildlife trafficking cases, increased sharing of financial intelligence, and improving controls to combat money laundering.

Yellen made the announcement on the last leg of her Africa trip, while visiting a game reserve outside of Johannesburg.

Yellen said, “To help save wildlife populations from further poaching and disrupt the associated illicit trade, we must ‘follow the money’ in the same way we do with other serious crimes.”

Poaching of animals like rhinos is a big problem in South Africa, with some 259 rhinos killed for their horns in the first six months of last year alone.