Emily Thornberry Labour MP for Islington South and Finsbury
Thank you to everyone who wrote to me about trophy hunting.
A huge number of constituents have contacted me about this issue, reflecting the strength of feeling about conservation and animal welfare in Islington South and Finsbury. Please rest assured that I share your view that trophy hunting is a cruel and barbaric practice has no place in modern society. I simply don’t understand how anyone could derive enjoyment from killing our planet’s precious wildlife, instead of preserving it for future generations to enjoy.
In addition to its brutality, far too often trophy hunting is used as a cover for illegal poaching, where it only helps push endangered wildlife closer to extinction and brings unnecessary suffering to animals. A report by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in 2016 found that at least 1.7 million animal ‘trophies’ were traded between countries over the previous decade. Of this number, 200,000 trophies were from threatened species.
As a result, I’m absolutely delighted that the Hunting Trophies (Importation Prohibition) Bill has now been passed on a cross-party basis in the House of Commons and – with the expectation that it will also be cleared by the House of Lords – it will now become law. The new law will prevent British big game hunters from bringing back to the UK the body parts of thousands of animal species, including lions, rhinos, elephants, and polar bears.
Thanks to the actions of those who have campaigned tirelessly for this important change in the law, we’ve achieved a huge step forward in our fight against cruel and inhumane so-called “bloodsports”. Please know that as your MP I will always stand up for the protections needed to save and cherish our planet’s beautiful wildlife.