The Duke of Cambridge has shared a heartbreaking, personal message calling for more support to be provided to wildlife rangers following the death of Anton Mzimba, a ranger who was killed in South Africa last week.
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Taking to Twitter, William penned: "The devastating news about Anton, who exemplified courage and commitment, illustrates the threat rangers face every day. And it reminds us of the human cost as Anton's family mourn the loss of a husband and a father.
"A ranger's job is crucial, but can be dangerous as they are regularly confronted by organised crime.
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"Last Sunday marked World Ranger Day. While we remember Anton, it is vital that we provide the right support, generated through organisations like Tusk or our work with United for Wildlife, so that incidents like this don't happen again."
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William, who is president of United for Wildlife and royal patron of Tusk, signed the message 'W'.
The thread on Twitter revealed that Anton was "potentially assassinated in his home and his wife severely injured". The news of his death came as Tusk launched its Wildlife Ranger Challenge, a multi-million-dollar fundraising initiative to support rangers across Africa.
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The thread also highlighted the wide-ranging skills that rangers have. "Rangers like Anton are on the frontline of conservation, protecting people as well as wildlife. Among many roles, they are teachers, carers and researchers, looking out for a natural world that can't defend itself," one post read.
Another tweet revealed how more than 1,000 rangers have been killed in the past ten years.
William is president of United for Wildlife and patron of Tusk
Last week, William issued a heartfelt message as he learnt of Anton's death. He tweeted: "I'm deeply saddened to learn of the killing of Anton Mzimba who I spoke to in November. Committed and brave, rangers like Anton are central to the conservation of Africa’s fantastic wildlife. Those responsible must swiftly be brought to justice. My thoughts are with his family. W."
Anton worked at the Timbavati Private Game Reserve near Kruger National Park in northeast South Africa.
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