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The Duel Between Human and Elephants

Caixin Weekly October 18, 2020

By NewsChina Updated Jan.1

Since the 1980s, the number of wild Asian elephants in Xishuangbanna, southwestern China’s Yunnan Province, rose from around 180 to more than 300 due to wildlife protection policies. In recent years, however, elephant-inflicted injuries and deaths have risen among the region’s human population. From 1991 to 2010, nearly 200 people were injured and 33 died from elephant attacks in the region. In 2019, at least 12 people were killed and in the first nine months of 2020, at least seven people were killed. Elephants and residents coexist in an area of 4,350 square kilometers, accounting for 22.8 percent of the area of Xishuangbanna. Animal experts argued that nowadays, only 10 percent of the habitat is suitable for elephants and they have moved out of their usual range because of human encroachment. It is high time to improve the surrounding environment and make it more suitable for elephants.