GENEVA -- An international conference on endangered species has agreed to protect giraffes for the first time, drawing praise from conservationists and scowls from some sub-Saharan African nations.
Thursday's vote by a key committee at the World Wildlife Conference known as CITES paves the way for likely approval by its plenary next week.
The measure would regulate the trade in giraffe parts, including hides, bone carvings and meat, while stopping short of a full ban. It passed 106-21 with seven abstentions.
The Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group, hailed the move, noting that giraffes are a vulnerable species facing habitat loss and population decline.
CITES says the population of wild giraffes is much smaller than that of wild African elephants.