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Harare, Zimbabwe — Zimbabwean officials say poachers killed five elephants by poisoning them with cyanide.

Rangers discovered the carcasses of the elephants with their tusks removed in a western forest last week, Violet Makoto, spokeswoman for Zimbabwe’s forestry commission, said Monday. No arrests have been made, she said.

Makoto said the poison was laced on salt licks, a method now regularly used by poachers to kill elephants in Zimbabwe.

She says poachers killed four other elephants in the same area in February.

The wildlife-rich southern African country has battled cyanide poisoning of wildlife by poachers for the past three years. Poachers killed 62 elephants by that method in October.

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