GABORONE, Aug. 18 (Xinhua) -- Botswana's Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism has discredited an online petition claiming government's hand in the recent elephant mortalities observed in the Seronga area, northwestern part of the country.
A press released on Monday from the ministry in Gaborone, said the petition claims that the government deliberately poisoned the animals in order to protect crops.
"We wish to make it clear that there is no truth behind this spurious and malicious claim. The use of poison to control elephants or any wildlife species is prohibited by law. If anyone is found practicing this unlawful method, appropriate action will be taken," stated the release.
Results received from local and international laboratories have ruled out commonly used agrochemicals or pesticides in wildlife poisoning as the cause of elephant mortality and efforts to establish the cause continue.
The ministry had previously reported that 281 elephants died mysteriously in Seronga since March this year.
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