On Thursday, China passed an interpretation of the Criminal Law which will put eaters of rare wild animals in jail.
Currently, 420 species of wild animals are considered rare or endangered by the Chinese government. They include pangolins, giant pandas, golden monkeys, and Asian black bears.
The new legal interpretation means anyone who eats the animals in this list or buys them for other purposes will be considered to be breaking the Criminal Law and will face a jail term that could be more than 10 years, depending on the degree of offending.
Save Pangolins commends China for strengthening their Criminal law to protect pangolins before they’re eaten to extinction. This is an opportunity for China to show real leadership in the region and turn these grim trends around.
“Eating rare wild animals is not only bad social conduct but also a main reason why illegal hunting has not been stopped despite repeated crackdowns,” said Lang Sheng, deputy head of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee.
This is the 10th interpretation of the Criminal Law by the top legislature since it took effect in 1997. The law has also been through 9 amendments.
Adapted from Xinhua