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Sometime in 1977, the Aliyan Wildlife Protection Act was enacted

incompliance with Aliyas CITES obligations. It criminalizes CITES violations

and provides for the confiscation of illegally traded wildlife stating that, if
practicable, such confiscated specimens shall be returned to the country of
origin. In 1980, Aliya passed the Aliyan Ivory Trade Prohibition Act, which
criminalized all domestic and international trade of ivory. Despite this act, an
underground market for illegal ivory further developed remained in
existence. Additionally, in 1990, Aliya passed a resolution declaring that
Thornon elephants and their parts are considered historically and
scientifically important in Aliya.
Similar to the Aliyan Wildlife Protection Act, Rincossi also enacted legislation
to protect wildlife and codify CITES in 1977. The Rincossi Flora and Fauna
Trafficking Act, prohibits international trade, which violates CITES and
mandates confiscation and destruction of illegally traded specimen. While
Rincossi has a legitimate ivory market, it legally restricts the trade within its
Rincossi businesses expansion into Thornon, while helping Aliyas economy,
also leads to an indirect increase of illegal ivory in both countries. In
response, in 2010, Rincossi amended its Trafficking Act to strengthen it by
increasing the maximum penalty for CITES violations to eight years in prison.
The amendment also clarifies that Rincossis destruction of illegal ivory
serves educational and deterrence interests.

Aliya and Rincossi are members of the United Nations (UN). Convention on
the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export, and
Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property (CPC), United Nations
Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), United Nations Convention
against Transboundary Organized Crime (UNTOC), Convention on
International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
It was July 2014, Ambassador Pam Cusi (Cusi) traveled to a port on the
coast of Aliya as part of a diplomatic mission. Several days later, Cusi
returned to Rincossi and was found in possession of 25 kg of illegal ivory,
which was immediately confiscated.
Rincossi then notified Aliyan officials, and the Parties decided to jointly
investigate the incident.
In November 2014, the investigation revealed that the Barnum Uritovsky
(BU) private group of Rincossi citizens involved in the international
transport business was involved in Cusis ivory purchase. Rincossi has been
monitoring BUs activities for years, leading to several arrests.

In December 2014, an informant reported BUs illegal system for transporting

ivory into Rincossi through its cooperation with Aliyan poachers and revealed
that the transport scheme began three years prior. After validating the
information, Rincossi raided several BU transport containers, finding
approximately 1,500 kg of illegal Thornon elephant ivory. Rincossi officials
confiscated the ivory and detained and questioned Cusi and BU members;
ultimately, Rincossi declined to prosecute the parties.
Upon learning that Rincossi had declined prosecution, Aliya sent Rincossi a
diplomatic note conveying its concern and offering assistance. Rincossi
responded by reiterating its shared concern regarding illegal ivory trafficking,
but explained its choice to continue monitoring BUs activities, rather than
make arrests. Thereafter, Aliya accused Rincossi of violating international
law, failing to enforce its own domestic legislation, and publically conveying
the lack of consequences for illegal trafficking.
Rincossi refuted Aliyas claims, relying on several international treaties,
which support Rincossis actions. Rincossi also clarified that Cusis actions
qualified as private behavior; thus, the matter fell within Rincossis internal
affairs. Rincossi also pointed out Aliyas similar behavior, where Aliya
previously declined to prosecute several ivory trafficking cases. Lastly,
Rincossi notified Aliya that it intended to destroy the subject ivory to deter
and educate.

On 11 March 2015, the joint investigation revealed that the subject ivorys
DNA matched the DNA of Thornon elephants in Aliyas National Park. On the
same day, Aliya sent a diplomatic note to Rincossi requesting the return of
the ivory to Aliya.
On 17 April, Rincossi countered Aliyas claims, citing Article VIII(1)(b) of
CITES, which provides the choice of confiscation or return. Rincossi further
noted that CITES Resolutions 9.9 and 9.10 support destruction as the
preferred treatment.
Rincossi cited paragraph 15(II) of the London Declaration as further support
for the destruction of illegal ivory. Rincossi then announced 7 July 2015 as
the date for the ivorys public destruction.


Rincossi fully complied with any international obligations and customary
international law regarding the prosecution of Ambassador Cusi and Barnum
Uritovsky for their alleged act of entering in to an illegal elephant ivory trade.
Rincossi did comply with the necessary prosecutorial actions under the
domestic law of their state.

Rincossi did not violate international law by refusing to return ivory to
Aliya. International law permits Rincossi to publicly destroy the ivory.
Rincossi, as a sovereign State, has the authority to destroy the ivory, which
further supports its domestic priorities while also fulfilling its international
obligations. The said Thornon Elephant Ivory is deemed not to be part of the
cultural property of Aliya. Pursuant to the provisions of CPC.
Therefore, the ivory cannot be considered as a cultural property of Aliya.