China has backed the jailing of a Chinese businesswoman labelled the "Ivory Queen" who was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a Tanzanian judge for smuggling the tusks of more than 350 elephants.
Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang according to AP said, China is ready to work with the international community to protect wildlife and curb the international trade, a move to help Tanzanian authorities in conducting a "just" investigation.
Yang Feng Glan had been charged in October 2015 along with two Tanzanian men with smuggling 860 pieces of ivory between 2000 and 2004 worth 13 billion shillings ($5.6 million). All three denied the charges.
Demand for ivory from Asian countries such as China and Vietnam, where it is turned into jewels and ornaments, has led to a surge in poaching across Africa.
Tanzania's elephant population shrank from 110,000 in 2009 to little more than 43,000 in 2014, according to a 2015 census, with conservation groups blaming "industrial-scale" poaching.
China backs jailing of Chinese businesswoman dubbed the "Ivory Queen"