The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has officially stated that importation of elephant hunting trophies from Africa will be permitted once again.
The new procedure allows for selective importation of ‘trophies’ from hunted elephants from Zimbabwe and Zambia on a ‘case-by-case’ basis.
The March 1 announcement effectively negates Donald Trump’s 2017 promise to keep the ban in place.
Tanya Sanerib, Center for Biological Diversity Senior Attorney said: “What the agency just did with this memo is completely contrary to everything Trump has been saying.
“Elephants aren’t meant to be trophies, they’re meant to roam free.”
The 2014 ban on hunting trophy importation – which was originally put in place during Obama’s presidency – has since been the source of much controversy.
In November, it was briefly reversed after a lawsuit was filed on the grounds that Obama’s administration did not follow proper procedure.
‘A horror show’
It was at this point that Trump’s intervention occurred.
The president shocked many when he stopped his own administration from lifting the ban, and took to twitter to call the practice ‘a horror show’.
At that time, Sanerib said: “It’s great that public outrage has forced Trump to reconsider this despicable decision, but it takes more than a tweet to stop trophy hunters from slaughtering elephants and lions.”
Back and forth
The news that the ban has once again been lifted left many shocked and upset.
Jimmiel Mandima of the African Wildlife Foundation asked: “Why does the decision keep flopping, are we hunting or are we not hunting?”
While one Facebook commenter wrote: “So basically, he will trade permits to hunt Elephants to his rich friends in exchange for campaign contributions? I wish someone would hunt this orange lunatic!”