Environment & Energy Report

China’s About-Face on Rhino, Tiger Parts Ban Causing Confusion

Nov. 14, 2018, 2:04 PM

China’s State Council’s short statement last month allowing trade in rhino horn and tiger parts for Chinese medicine after a 25-year ban signaled to citizens that the move would better protect these critically endangered species.

Two weeks later, a top State Council official, Deputy Secretary-General Ding Xuedong, was attributed as saying that lifting the ban was being “postponed after study” and that import and export, sales, and use of rhino and tiger parts by licensed traditional medicine practitioners was still prohibited.

That statement, which the state-run Xinhua news agency issued Nov. 12 as a question-and-answer story, is only...

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