Zimbabwe performs mercy killing on rhino shot by poachers

Zimbabwe performs mercy killing on rhino shot by poachers

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Harare: Game wardens in Zimbabwe have killed a black rhino popular with tourists to end its suffering after suspected poachers shot and severely wounded the animal, the wildlife parks’ agency said on Monday.

Buying and selling rhino horn internationally was banned in 1977. In Zimbabwe, killing a rhino carries a mandatory nine-year sentence upon conviction.

But rhino horn is prized in Asia for use in traditional remedies and surging demand has led to more poaching. A record 1,305 rhinos were illegally killed in Africa last year.

Zimbabwe’s black and white rhino population is estimated at just over 800, said Washaya-Moyo. The World Wildlife Fund said in a January report that 50 rhinos had been killed in Zimbabwe in 2015, double the figure for the previous year.

“It’s been a gut-wrenching weekend … one of the most difficult things we’ve had to do,” Aware Trust said on its official Facebook page which also showed pictures of Ntombi’s injuries.

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