Secretary-General's video message to Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection International Forum
I am pleased to greet the Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection International Forum, and I thank the Government of Kyrgyzstan for hosting.
Snow leopards are famously elusive, but the message they convey is easy to find.
We are all responsible for the survival of these magnificent big cats and their environment.
As few as 4,000 snow leopards remain in the wild across 12 countries in Central, East and South Asia.
Shrinking habitats, poaching and climate change all threaten their existence.
Investing in the snow leopard’s fragile mountain habitats is essential for people and planet – for biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.
Comprehensive transboundary strategies are needed to restore snow leopard populations.
We must work together to end illegal wildlife trade, stop habitat fragmentation and prevent human-wildlife conflicts.
Broader issues also need to be addressed in the regions where snow leopards exist, including stopping environmental degradation, increasing prosperity and supporting the transition to more inclusive, greener economies.
This Forum is important to these goals.
I wish you a successful meeting.