A conservationist has praised Ellen Cobb for introducing a petition that has prompted the UK Parliament to debate the ban on ivory.

Born Free president Will Travers said the trade in ivory from elephants massacred by poachers continues unabated. “The UK as one of the largest exporters of legal ivory products fuels global demand and allows illegal ivory from elephants massacred by poachers to be laundered into trade,” he said.

Cobb’s e-petition called for the shutdown of domestic ivory market in the UK and attracted more than 100,000 signatures. Last week, 29 African Elephant Coalition members urged the EU and the UK to permanently ban the external and domestic ivory trade. China announced late last year that it will end the trade and processing of ivory and its products in March this year.

For the second time in two months, more than 30 MPs debated the need for the UK to take action against the internal domestic trade in ivory. Before the debate, some activists staged a rally outside Parliament. Born Free policy adviser Dominic Dyer and Mark Jones called for urgent action. The majority of the MPs who spoke supported the call for a ban. This cut across all major political parties. Environment Minister Therese Coffey reiterated the UK’s intention to launch public input on plans to introduce a ban on post-1947 worked ivory items.