UK

Prince William in China: The battle to save elephants

The irony will not have been lost on Prince William.

In Wild Elephant Valley, close to the Burmese border, the prince met Ran Ran and learned about the initiatives being undertaken here to protect Asian elephants.

This conservation work is taking place at the same time as elephants are being slaughtered in Africa to satisfy the growing Chinese market in ivory.

William can't singlehandedly stop that demand. In a speech he chose not to criticise but to encourage and focus on the work being done in China, work which conservation critics say isn't enough.

In the past, the British royals hunted such creatures. Now Prince William, who enjoys shooting, is working to eradicate the illegal wildlife trade.

In three days in China, William has drawn attention to the plight of elephants less fortunate than Ran Ran; he's focused on trade; and he's improved the relationship between the Windsors and the Chinese leadership.