Britain will this week take up the cause of the slow loris, one of the world's most attractive, and endangered, primates.
The nocturnal animal - which gets its name from its languorous progress through the trees, feeding on clusters of bamboo - has been traded close to extinction in Cambodia, and is heading in the same direction in the other south and south-east Asian countries where it lives.
It is widely bought and sold as a pet, in shopping malls as well as in animal markets, and several of its body parts are used in traditional medicines.
Ministers will tomorrow be joining a bid, led by Cambodia, for a ban on international trade in slow loris, and products made from them, a meeting of the 169 countries that are members of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, which regulates the world's wildlife trade.
Killed and sold for Asian medicine
The slow loris, sought after for its healing properties, is used in many traditional Asian remedies and medicines. Body parts are also worn to ward off evil spirits and bolster spirituality.
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