Three wildlife rangers and four suspected poachers have been killed in a gun battle in Kenya.
Kenya has been hailed for its efforts to combat ivory poaching
A spokesman for Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) said seven rangers patrolling the Tana River District were attacked by an unknown number of armed men.
The area is home to three national parks where poaching is common.
KWS spokesman Paul Udoto said two AK47 assault rifles and two axes were recovered and rangers were pursuing several suspected poachers.
Mr Udoto said another ranger was seriously wounded in the gunfight that took place at 0200 (2300 GMT).
Kenya has been hailed for its efforts in combating the trade in elephant tusks and other animal parts that is a big business for poachers in East Africa.
Wildlife tourism is an important source of revenue for Kenya.
The trade in ivory is banned under international treaty and Kenya has been opposed to calls for a partial lifting of the ban.
Last year the KWS said it broke up an international syndicate dealing in ivory and other illegal animal products.