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Kruger rangers kill four suspected rhino poachers

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Kruger National Park rangers have killed four suspected rhino poachers in the space of four days.

South African National Parks (SANParks) spokesperson JP Louw said the first incident took place on 14 June.

“On Friday, just before dark, rangers made contact with a group of suspected rhino poachers who were armed with a high calibre rifle, an axe and other poaching equipment. One of the suspects was fatally wounded on contact while the others escaped. A rifle and ammunition were recovered at the scene.”

On 18 June, rangers encountered another armed group of suspected rhino poachers.

“During the contact, three of the suspects were fatally wounded and a heavy calibre hunting rifle, ammunition and other poaching equipment were seized. Both incidents are currently being investigated by the South African Police Service (SAPS) while the field rangers are receiving counselling,” said Louw.

Louw said the two incidents highlighted the dangerous conditions rangers operate under.

“It particularly demonstrates the threats they face against suspected poachers. Incursions on the Eastern boundary are still relentless and the anti-poaching units have been under a lot of pressure as it addresses these.”

“SANParks is also exploring numerous interventions which includes community mobilisation and support to push back against the threats poaching presents.”

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