ISLAMABAD: In wake of birds diplomacy, the federal government has issued a special permit to the ruler of Dubai to export 25 falcons of a rare and endangered species from Pakistan to the UAE, local media quoting sources said today.
This is violation of local wildlife protection laws as well as various international treaties on nature conservation signed by the country.
According to reports quoting highly placed sources, by issuing the permit to Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, the foreign ministry has put at risk the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP-Plus) status given to Pakistan by the European Union. The move will also promote illegal wildlife trade and trafficking.
The reports said Arab hunters used the rare migratory falcons — Saker and Peregrine — to hunt internationally protected houbara bustard whose meat is considered to be an aphrodisiac, though not supported by any scientific research.
This is the second such export permit issued by the government this season. The earlier one was issued a few days ago to Saudi Prince Fahd, who is Governor of Tabuk province. He had attracted global attention last year when news about his hunting 2,100 houbara bustards in Balochistan’s Chagai district appeared in the media.
The export permit “No: DCP (P&I) – 18/6/2015 – 16/Falcons/UAE” was issued in mid-Oct and sent to the UAE Embassy. It stated that the authorities concerned had been requested to accord facilitation for export of the falcons.