COVID-19: Vietnam bans wildlife trade to avoid new pandemic risk
New Delhi, July 25: Vietnam has banned the import of wildlife and wildlife products to reduce the risk of new pandemics.
"The Prime Minister orders the suspension of imports of wildlife - dead or alive - their eggs... parts or derivatives," said the order released on the Vietnamese government website.
"All citizens, especially officials... must not participate in illegal poaching, buying, selling, transporting... of illegal wildlife."
The order also said, "The country will also resolutely eliminate market and trading sites which trade wildlife illegally."
Conservationists of the Southeast Asian country welcomed the move saying , "This trade must be banned as a matter of international and public health security."
Scientists have long warned that the wildlife trade can be an incubator for infecteous diseases like COVID-19.
The origins of the current pandemic are thought to lie in the wildlife trade, with the disease emerging in bats and jumping to people via another, as yet unidentified, species, also could include rats, civets and pangolins.
Meanwhile, after being hit hard by previous epidemics, Vietnam imposed an extensive, early lockdown and has reported no coronavirus deaths so far.