Vietnam has actively engaged in international conventions and partnerships in biodiversity conservation and anti-wildlife trafficking.

The fight against wildlife crimes, including the tackling of the illegal wildlife trade, has received consistent attention from authorities and benefited from effective cooperation between the public and administrations.

The forest protection force of Vinh Phuc province in a patrol

An annual report released by the Education for Nature - Vietnam (ENV) has shown efforts by authorities in 62 provinces and cities, excluding Bac Lieu province that reported no infringements.

In 2022, law enforcement bodies, mainly the public security and forest protection forces, responded to 97% of the wildlife violations reported via the ENV hotline 1800-1522, which helped people quickly liaise with authorities and report violations.

Authority responsiveness is key to setting up and maintaining effective cooperation with local residents to combat wildlife crimes.

However, despite a relatively high rate of response to reports, the rate of cases successfully dealt with remains low, at 28.9%. Only one in every three violation cases related to live wild animals was successfully handled.

Given this, local authorities need to improve the effectiveness to raise the rate of successfully handled cases to at least 50% in the coming years, according the ENV.

ENV Deputy Director Bui Thi Ha said results of the report, first launched in 2020, are submitted to the People’s Committees of provinces and cities to understand the situation in comparison with others nationwide.

With a relatively complete legal system on wildlife protection, the most important thing now is to enhance the effectiveness of law enforcement, she said. She expressed her hope that relevant agencies will pay more attention to the effective settlement of wildlife crimes regardless of whether the animals involved are rare or not, and violations are committed online or in reality.

In the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak, there are currently 37 domesticated elephants, a sharp fall from the 502 recorded in the early 1980s.

To promote wildlife protection, the ENV and the provincial Department of Information and Communications have connected the app Dak Lak Truc Tuyen (Dak Lak Online) with a hotline for wildlife protection 1800-1522 since September 2022.

The province’s center for elephant conservation, animal rescue, and forest management has instructed its staff members to install the app so that they can introduce it to local residents and encourage the public to report wildlife crimes and animals that require rescue.

In addition, the ENV and the Dak Lak department have also coordinated to hold seminars and training courses on wildlife crime settlement for press agencies, released short films, texted telephone subscribers, and shared images and messages online so as to disseminate legal regulations and discourage the public from wildlife trafficking and consumption.

Source: VNA