An international summit devoted to African elephant conservation took place in Botswana's capital, Gaborone, from 2 to 4 December 2013. This conference aimed to lay the foundation for successfully combating the escalation in poaching of the world's largest land mammals. A total of 50 countries had been invited. High-level representatives were expected from the countries of Africa (Tanzania, Kenya, South Africa and Gabon) and Asia (China, Vietnam and Malaysia) where the issue is politically relevant. The conference was being organised by the government of Botswana and the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). The Federal Environment Ministry helped launch the conference and was providing financial support.
Federal Environment Minister Peter Altmaier made the following statement: "A global problem such as ivory smuggling requires global solutions. Germany will play an active role in making connections and moving things forward at this summit devoted to African elephant conservation. We are not interested in assigning blame, but rather in solving the problem. We all must do our part -- countries of origin, transit and destination alike. We owe this to the elephants, but also to the many people who are affected by organised wildlife crime."