MOSCOW, October 4 (RIA Novosti) - Cities throughout the world gather to participate in the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos (GMFER) on Saturday to rally against the ivory and rhino horn trade which could be potentially wipe out the endangered animals within the next 20 years.
"On October 4th people in cities throughout the world will march as one voice to save Elephants and Rhinos. The countdown to their extinction has begun," the GMFER official website states.
"Please join the global march to call for an end to the killing and a ban on ivory and rhino horn before it's too late," the website says.
According to the organization, some 35,000 elephants are killed every year for their tusks while one rhino is slaughtered every nine to 11 hours for its horn. Should hunting rates continue, the animals could be wiped out completely within two decades.
"It would be devastating and criminal if elephants and rhinos went extinct within 20 years, but that is the frightening reality. It could happen. It will happen, if something isn't done," co-organiser of the organizations London March, Maria Mossman was quoted as saying by The Independent.
The rally calls for an immediate end to the legal and illegal ivory and rhino horn trade in hopes of saving the animals" populations from continued slaughter. Shops and factories using the tusks and horn are also being protested while campaigners also urge higher penalties for wildlife crime and stricter law enforcement in countries where the animals are being hunted.
According to The Independent, some high-profile campaigners include Sir David Attenborough, Sir Richard Branson, Rory Bremner, Joanna Lumley, Stephen Fry, Ricky Gervais, Damon Albarn and Michaela Strachan. Cities hosting the march include Paris, London, Frankfurt, Madrid, Chicago, and New York among many others.