Resource Protection: Zambia

Situated at the heart of the Southern African region, Zambia shares largely unprotected borders with four countries identified by CITES as ivory poaching and trafficking source countries: Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mozambique and Tanzania as well as three states with important elephant populations in Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe. This places Zambia in the centre of the regional transit networks, with illegal wildlife products from a number of countries being transported from and through Zambia en route to other transit and market countries. Zambia’s capital city, Lusaka is a well-known wildlife crime hub where wildlife products are processed and criminals can source weapons, finance and other logistics.

DSWF funding helps support law enforcement activities that help identify and secure convictions for poachers and traffickers. Funding also helps an education and outreach programme that engages local communities and helps foster a deeper understanding about the protection and importance of their native wildlife.

Working closely in partnership with the Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW) across the country the team in Zambia support:

  • Intelligence lead Operations: covert, undercover, information gathering ops
  • Investigations Operations: raids, stings, and roadblocks across the country
  • Rapid Response Unit: to ensure wildlife crime is dealt with in a time effective and preventative manner
  • Baseline understanding of illegal wildlife trade in Zambia (volume, domestic market, transit routes, main actors, extent and impact)

Support is provided through training and capacity building to the DNPW officers who have the legal mandate to conduct these law enforcement operations.

With the recent rise in pangolin poaching, DSWF is now also funding the first Pangolin Protection Programme in Zambia.

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