South African Parks Says Kruger Rhino Move to Proceed When Ready

South Africa plans to relocate rhinos from the Kruger National Park as soon as possible to protect them from poachers, South African National Parks said.

“The translocations will be taking place as soon as all the planning has been finalized,” South African National Parks, known as SANParks, said in a statement, denying media reports that the plan had been postponed until next year.

South Africa, home to most of the world’s rhinos, is struggling to protect the animals from poachers. So far this year 638 rhinos have been poached in South Africa, almost two thirds of those in Kruger, a reserve the size of Israel, compared with a record 1,004 in all of last year.

Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa announced Aug. 12 that South Africa’s cabinet approved the relocation of rhinos from Kruger to secret sites within the country and across its borders.

Demand for rhino horns has climbed in Asian nations including China and Vietnam because of a false belief that they can cure diseases such as cancer.

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