Pakistan bans Houbara Bustard hunting, cancels licences

Islamabad, Aug 19 (IANS) The Pakistani Apex court on Wednesday imposed a ban on hunting the endangered Houbara Bustard and ordered cancellation of the special licences granted to foreign dignitaries to hunt the bird in Balochistan province.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Jawwad S Khawaja moved to ban the hunting, Geo News reported.

Khawaja also ruled that hunting of the Houbara has been declared illegal by Balochistan’s provincial government and the High Court has also given a verdict in this regard.

“The federal government could not interfere in provincial matters according to 18th amendment,” he said.

The houbara bustard was listed in the Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals, also known as the Bonn Convention.

It has also been declared as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of threatened species because it has undergone rapid population declines over three decades owing to unsustainable hunting as well as habitat degradation. Pakistan is signatory to the conventions.

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