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Improved law enforcement and more effective disruption of criminal networks led to a decline in the rate of rhino poaching in Namibia in 2020, according to a report released on Friday, April 9, 2021.

A rhino being de-horned

On the other hand, significantly more rhino horns were seized during 2020 than in 2019, the Combating Wildlife Crime in Namibia Annual Report 2020 states.

The report states that the arrests during 2020 have included a number of high-level perpetrators, with significant international connections.

“The breadth of arrests in cases related to rhinos, ranging from poachers to abettors to local dealers and finally international kingpins, have had a significant knock-on effect.

“Arrests also continue to be made in older cases registered prior to 2020,” the report stated, adding that during 2020, 36 suspects were arrested in line with older cases.

According to the report, although wildlife crime is ultimately driven by demand in consumer countries, Namibians continue to make up over 90 percent of arrested wildlife crime suspects in the country.

“This highlights the need for broader interventions to reduce poverty and strengthen social rejection of crime,” the report noted.

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