Prince William bemoans 'heartbreaking' threat of animal extinction
Prince William gestures as he makes a speech at the Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference in London, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, Pool)
The Associated Press
Published Thursday, October 11, 2018 9:42AM EDT
LONDON -- Prince William has told a two-day international wildlife protection conference that he could not face his children if his generation allows elephants, tigers and other species to become extinct.
"It's heartbreaking to think that by the time my children, George, Charlotte and Louis are in their 20s, elephants, rhinos and tigers might well be extinct in the wild," he told the Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference hosted by the British government.
William told political leaders and businesses and conservation groups in the keynote speech Thursday that it makes economic sense to protect wildlife from criminal networks targeting animals in the wild.
British officials also announced an "Ivory Alliance 2024" initiative designed to lessen demand for ivory products, strengthen enforcement of existing bans and toughen anti-poaching legislation.
"I am not willing to look my children in the eye and say that we were the generation that let this happen on our watch. It is time to treat the illegal wildlife trade as the serious organised crime that it is." — The Duke of Cambridge #EndWildlifeCrime pic.twitter.com/xkmKQL8dgx— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) October 11, 2018