The capital of Kazakhstan hosts an international conference on the conservation of snow leopard.
The topic of the conference is the snow leopard conservation: the state of populations, landscape management and cross-border cooperation. The main purpose of the event is to continue the development of effective joint mechanisms for the conservation of this beautiful and endangered animal in all countries where it lives.
As part of the event, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Snow Leopard Foundation, a private international snow leopard conservation fund, signed a Memorandum of cooperation aimed at preserving and studying snow leopard population and developing data management in Kazakhstan.
UNDP and the Snow Leopard Foundation agreed to create a research laboratory of genetic data of snow leopard, strengthen the monitoring of leopard population groups, form a single database on the snow leopard as well as collect and analyze video and photo images from all photo traps in the country.
"In close cooperation with all stakeholders, we need to develop a common strategy and action plan for the conservation of snow leopard, as well as to develop plans for landscape management of ecosystems inhabited by snow leopard," – emphasized Mr. Yakup Beris, UNDP Resident Representative in Kazakhstan.
The conference is attended by representatives of 12 countries - Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Mongolia, China, India, Nepal, Bhutan and Russia, inhabited by snow leopards. Experts from UNDP, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Snow Leopard Trust, the Secretariat of the Global programme for the conservation of snow leopard and its ecosystems (GSLEP), the International Union for conservation of nature (IUCN) and other international organizations also took part at the event.
"The very fact that representatives of all countries of snow leopard habitat are participating here today indicates a good beginning of our common goal to preserve snow leopard population," – said Magzum Mirzagaliyev, Minister of Ecology, Geology and Natural Resources of Kazakhstan.
The participants of the conference discussed the prospects of building a center for breeding and adaptation of snow leopard in the Ile-Alatau national park and the project of creating a single international information center in Almaty, whose tasks will include conducting educational work among local residents, as well as the creation of a single database containing complete information about animals living throughout the habitat of the leopard.