The American dentist who killed Cecil the lion was a “foreign poacher” who paid for an illegal hunt and he should be extradited to Zimbabwe to face justice, environment minister Oppah Muchinguri said on Friday. In Harare’s first official comments since Cecil’s killing grabbed world headlines this week, Muchinguri said the Prosecutor General had already started the process to have 55-year-old Walter Palmer extradited from the United States. Muchinguri, a 91-year-old veteran from President Robert Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party, described Cecil – a black-maned lion well-known to foreign tourists in the Hwange National Park – as an “iconic attraction”. “The illegal killing was deliberate,” she told a news conference. “We are appealing to the responsible authorities for his extradition to Zimbabwe so that he can be held accountable for his illegal actions.”
Late yesterday the White House announced that it will respond to the petition created by JMG participant Scott Wooledge.