22nd July 2024

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Rangers engage suspected poachers in Kruger National Park

Standard Lesotho Bank launches groundbreaking M11 million cashback rewards for loyal customers footer
Standard Lesotho Bank launches groundbreaking M11 million cashback rewards for loyal customers footer
Rangers engage suspected poachers in Kruger National Park

Nomazulu Moyo
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – In a series of intense encounters, rangers at Kruger National Park (KNP) recently faced off with suspected rhino poachers, incidents that highlight the dangerous conditions rangers operate in and underscore ongoing threats posed by poaching.

Just before nightfall on 14 June 2024, KNP rangers made contact with a group of suspected poachers. Armed with a high-caliber rifle, an axe, and other poaching equipment, the suspects engaged in a fight with the rangers. During the confrontation, one of the suspects was fatally wounded, while the others managed to escape. Authorities recovered a rifle and ammunition at the scene.

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Four days later, on 18 June 2024, rangers encountered another armed group of suspected poachers. This time, the confrontation resulted in the deaths of three suspects. The rangers seized a heavy-caliber hunting rifle, ammunition, and additional poaching equipment.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) is currently investigating both incidents. Meanwhile, field rangers are receiving counseling to cope with the emotional toll of these encounters.

JP Louw, SANParks Head of Communications, emphasised the relentless pressure faced by anti-poaching units along the park’s Eastern boundary. SANParks is actively exploring interventions, including community mobilization and support, to counter the ongoing threats posed by poaching.

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