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WWF's African species expert Matthew Lewis said he "did not want to believe" the rhino poaching statistics for 2012, which showed a record number of rhinos were killed.
Rumours that powdered rhino horn can cure cancer and other diseases have fuelled a huge and growing demand for it in countries like Vietnam.
This illegal trade is threatening the very existence of one of the world's great animals.
ITV News China Correspondent Angus Walker went undercover to expose a trade that is causing the rhino to be hunted by poachers to the brink of extinction:
- Nearly 2,400 rhinos have been poached across Africa since 2006.
- The high level of poaching means that growth of the rhino population is at its slowest since 1995.
- Rhino poaching increased by 43% between 2011 and 2012.
- 3% of the rhino population was lost in 2012.
- In 2012, at least 745 rhinos were poached throughout Africa, the highest in two decades.
- This year a rhino is being poached every 11 hours, which is higher than the 2012 average.
Latest ITV News reports
The UK is leading calls for Vietnam and China to stem the roaring demand for ivory that is driving the rise in poaching in Africa.
If the demand for rhino horns in Vietnam continues at the current rate it could threaten to wipe out this majestic animal.