HANOI, Nov. 17 (Xinhua) -- Britain's Prince William called for smarter measures and stronger moves to fight against illegal wildlife trade (IWT) here on Thursday at the Third International Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade.
The British prince also highlighted China's already signaling a total ban of IWT as well as the fact that China and other countries in Asia take leadership in confronting demand for IWT products within their own borders.
Illegal wildlife criminals, and even those corruptive officials who let the situation escalate, are urged to be brought to justice, the prince said.
Vietnam, one of major transit points and consumers of illegally trafficked ivory and rhino horns, for the first time has destroyed seized ivory and rhino horns, said William.
On Saturday, more than two tons of ivory and 70 kg of rhino horn were crushed and burned on the outskirts of Hanoi.
"But here is the problem: We know that we aren't moving fast enough to keep up with the crisis," William told conference, citing the Great Elephant Census as saying that 30 percent of African elephant population has declined in just seven years.
Organized crime syndicates are much more agile, he said, adding that although authorities worked harder at ports and borders, most illegally poached products are still slipping through the internet.
"Everyone acknowledges that extinction of ironic species will be huge loss faced humanity. It is only a test of wills," said William, who also serves as president of United for Wildlife, a collaboration between seven of the largest field based international conservation organizations and The Royal Foundation.
The conference, the third in a series of global conferences that started with the London Conference in 2014, and the Kasane Conference in 2015, brought together global leaders to help eradicate illegal wildlife trade and better protect wild species from the threat of extinction.
High-level representatives of more than 40 countries are slated to adopt a Hanoi Declaration that will include a roadmap to tangible and unified actions against illegal wildlife trade.