More than 20,000 African elephants were poached across the continent in 2013 according to a report released today by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Although the sharp upward trend in illegal elephant killing observed since the mid-2000s, which had peaked in 2011, is levelling off, poaching levels remain alarmingly high and continue to far exceed the natural elephant population growth rates, resulting in a further decline in elephant populations across Africa. CITES /FILE
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