By Nomore Chinoda

Ivory Coast International and Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure joined hands with the United Nations Environment Programme (Unep) to campaign against the ever increasing cases of elephant poaching.

Toure who was recently named Unep Goodwill Ambassador joined the movement in a bid to stop the slaughter of elephants of which 800 remain in his country.

He told BBC News that poaching has been the major stumbling block to the existence of the African elephant.

“Poaching threatens the very existence of the African elephant and if we do not act now, we could be looking at a future in which this iconic species is wiped out,” said Toure.

Unep Executive Director Achim Steiner was happy that Yaya agreed to join the campaign.

2011 estimates revealed that over 15,000 elephants were illegally killed.

In Zimbabwe, poachers through the use of cyanide poisoning killed over 300 elephants in less than three months this year and conservationists described this as the worst single massacre in southern Africa for 25 years.

Under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of World Flora and Fauna, ivory trade is banned.

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