, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 1 – Three suspected poachers have been killed, four firearms recovered and five elephants killed in two separate incidents in Isiolo and Tsavo in the last one week, according to the Kenya Wildlife Service.
In a statement KWS said more suspects are on the run in both incidents.
KWS said in the latest incident which occurred on Sunday night, rangers gunned down a suspected bandit in a fierce exchange of fire on the outskirts of Meru National Park in the expansive Isiolo County.
A major operation was launched on Monday morning to arrest other suspects who were on the run. “They are believed to have sustained injuries from last night’s shoot-out,” a statement from KWS reads in part.
“Two AK-47 rifles and 30 rounds of ammunition were recovered in the incident at Moliti area, 10km from Kinna Trading Centre in Garbatulla District, Isiolo County.”
The suspects had shot dead an elephant at 6pm and were in the process of hacking off the tusks using axes when the KWS rangers ambushed them.
One KWS ranger was injured on the shoulder during the shoot-out and evacuated to Maua Methodist Hospital where he is undergoing treatment.
“Doctors said his condition is stable. Plans are being made to airlift the injured ranger to Nairobi for specialised treatment in the course of the day,” KWS said in the statement.
Meanwhile, a suspected poacher is being interrogated in Voi after being arrested in an incident on Tuesday last week where two of his accomplices were killed. Three others escaped and one AK-47 rifle was recovered.
KWS rangers engaged the suspected poachers in a shoot-out in Galana ADC Ranch, and killed two of them on Tuesday. They recovered two pieces of ivory buried in the sand. The suspects were found with five more pieces.
The suspect in custody was arrested on Saturday (October 30, 2010) in Ngao area of Garsen District with a G 3 rifle, having walked 100 km from the scene of poaching in Galana.