For information only - not an official document

28 February 2018

Executive Director, UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Yury Fedotov:

Statement on World Wildlife Day

3 March 2018

VIENNA, 3 March 2018 (UN Information Service) - The cheetah is the world's fastest land animal. But like other big cat species, it cannot outrun the threat of extinction.

This year, the theme of World Wildlife Day - "Big cats: predators under threat" - is bringing much-needed attention to the urgent challenges faced by these majestic animals.

Across the world, lions, tigers, leopards and jaguars, as well as many other big cat species, are under pressure due to poaching, lost habitats and disappearing prey.

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is working to help countries criminalize wildlife poaching and trafficking as a means of protecting animals, including big cat species, and halting their tragic disappearance into history.

Our collective roar of defiance must be aimed at the poachers, traffickers and all those who would destroy our natural heritage. We must not let them succeed.

On Wildlife Day I call on everyone to work with the international community to stop wildlife crime and prevent the world's big cat species from sliding into extinction.

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For further information, contact:

David Dadge
Spokesperson, UNODC
Telephone: (+43 1) 26060-5629
Mobile: (+43-699) 1459-5629
Email: david.dadge[at]