The Ministry of Environment in Egypt announced the conclusion of the activities of the first ever meeting of the Intergovernmental Task Force on Illegal Killing on the Mediterranean region and launched "Cairo Declaration" to combat poaching of migratory birds. Dr. Mustafa Fouda Minister's Advisor for Biodiversity and Dr. Jamal Jum’a director of nature conservation section, beside the representative of the Secretariat of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) and with the participation of the United Nations Environment Program, Migratory Soaring Birds project, the Convention for the safeguarding of animals and number of international organizations and stakeholders.
Dr. Jamal Jum’a confirmed that Cairo Declaration gives a clear message for anyone who wants to trap birds illegally that there will be a serious action from government officials against him, and there will be more attention to address that phenomenon.
Dr. Mustafa Fouda presented the declaration according to the ministry statement, which included emphasis on the importance of poaching birds issue and its impact on biodiversity. He stressed on the need for strengthening the cooperation between governments and organizations that work in conservation to protect the migratory birds from illegal killing, hunting and trading. He also focused on the importance of sharing available information, action plans and guidebooks to support the preparation of a comprehensive road map to eliminate it, as well as the need to consider the social and economic aspects.
BirdLife International recently produced an important report on the status of illegal killing of birds in the Mediterranean. The report estimated the numbers in Egypt to be among the highest in the Mediterranean at the level of illegal killing, taking and trade of migratory birds.
Nature Conservation Egypt; NCE– BirdLife partner in Egypt - is currently implementing two related BirdLife -supported projects one on “reducing illegal trapping of migrating birds in Northern Egypt” and the is second is part of a regional project on “Hope for migratory birds in the Eastern Mediterranean: action against illegal killing” financed by Birds Fair.
The declaration also included the need to consider the revision of national legislations and the implementation of relevant research programs in this area, while recognizing the importance of the different methodologies either precautionary or consultation to eliminate the illegal killing, with a commitment to implement the proposed work program.
In addition to establish a team of experts to fight the illegal killing and trading in the Mediterranean basin; and help in enforcing the laws, preparing new legislation and work to maintain, monitor poaching of migratory birds, as well as raise public awareness.