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Rhino horn consumers damage VN reputation: Vietnamese enviro NGO

September 21, 2014

The head of a local environment NGO in Vietnam has accused rhino horn (sung te giac) consumers in her country of tainting Vietnam’s image internationally.

“The international image of our country has been negatively portrayed as a result of the actions of a very small group of people in our society who consume rhino horn, or are directly involved in the killing and smuggling of rhino horns,” says Vu Thi Quyen, Executive director of Education for Nature-Vietnam (ENV).

Ms Quyen’s comments come as an anti-rhino-horn-trade delegation from Vietnam, including three celebrity pop stars, Hong Nhung, Thu Minh and Thanh Bui return home from an awareness-raising visit to South Africa.

“At Kruger National Park, we had the opportunity to witness the most horrific scene: a bloated dead rhino that had been slaughtered by poachers, its horn hacked off and its body left to rot in the bush,” Hong Nhung says.

National Park officials said the rhino was one of nine that reportedly died in one week in Kruger, as a result of increased poaching due to the improved visibility during the full moon.

EVN has been running a campaign online to discourage the use of rhino horn in Vietnam where it is ground into a powder and drank like milk.

“Each Vietnamese citizen should take responsibility for helping stop the rhino horn trade, by letting
consumers know how foolish they are for thinking that the use of rhino horn makes them special in any
way,” Ms Quyen says.

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