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Thirteen countries commit to increase funds for protecting wild tigers

11-25-2010 09:14 BJT

BEIJING, Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- Leaders from 13 countries committed to jointly increase a 127 million U.S. dollar fund to back an international tiger recovery program at the International Tiger Forum, which closed in Russia's St. Petersburg Wednesday, a spokesman with the World Wildlife Fund(WWF) Beijing office said.

Fan Zhiyong, who is the Species Program Director of WWF's Beijing Office, said that the major plan of the Global Tiger Recovery Program is to double the number of tigers in the wild by 2022.

There are now as few as 3,200 wild tigers and the numbers continue to fall, said Fan.

"We have never before seen this kind of political support to save a single species," said WWF Director General Jim Leape, "We now have the strategy needed to double tiger numbers and real political momentum."

"Initial funding commitments offered at the forum will help get action underway. Much more funding must be mobilized in the months ahead," Leape noted.

The International Tiger Forum, initiated by the World Bank, was held from Nov.21-24 in Russia's second largest city St. Petersburg. The forum was aimed at stopping the tiger population from decreasing.

High-level delegates from 13 countries, including China, Bangladesh, India and Russia, endorsed a declaration and a strategy to protect the animal.

Editor:Jin Lin |Source: Xinhua

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