WASHINGTON (AP) - A Republican congressman is praising President Donald Trump's decision to delay a new policy allowing trophies of African elephants shot for sport to be brought into the country.
Rep. Vern Buchanan, who co-chairs the Congressional Animal Protection Caucus, says more needs to be done to protect African elephants from extinction. He says sport hunting of the endangered species is "shameful" and calls for a permanent ban.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Thursday it would allow the importation of elephant trophies from Zambia and Zimbabwe, arguing that encouraging wealthy big-game hunters to kill the animals would help raise money for conservation programs.
After animal rights advocates and environmental groups criticized the decision, Trump said late Friday he was delaying the new policy until he can review "all conservation facts."
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