Animal Defenders International

 

Animal Defenders International

Animals in Traveling Circuses: 9. World Opinion

Posted: 10 May 2008

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A nationwide ban on all wild animals in circuses is already in place in Austria. This example was recently followed by Hungary, which banned wild animals by Government decree, in September 2007. A growing number of EU countries have also banned the use of certain species, including Denmark, Sweden, Finland, France, and the Czech Republic.
Major European cities refusing entry to circus animals include Thessaloniki (Greece) and Venice (Italy). In the United Kingdom, the Government is currently discussing the introduction of a ban on the use of certain non-domesticated species in traveling circuses.

Although the European Union has currently no plans to implement an EU-wide ban, the European Commission made clear in December 2006 through a Parliamentary Question that such bans are not, in its view, contrary to Common Market rules and that animal welfare was an issue of great importance . The trend is the same in non-EU countries such as Croatia where most of major cities have bans. In the United Kingdom, the Government is currently discussing the introduction of a ban on the use of certain non-domesticated species in traveling circuses.

In Latin America, Costa Rica has banned all wild animals in circuses. Nationwide bans on all animals in traveling circuses are under consideration in Bolivia and Peru where legislation is expected in the near future. The State of Rio de Janeiro, and the cities of Buenos Aires (Argentina), Porto Alegre (Brazil) La Paz, Sucre, El Alto, Cochabamba, Santa Cruz and Tiquipalla (Bolivia) have implemented full bans wild and domesticated species except La Paz which has a ban wild animals only.

In the Middle East and Asia, Singapore, Israel and India have banned wild animals in circuses. Australia and New-Zealand have local bans such as Parramatta (Sydney) and Wellington.

Banning the use of animal acts from circuses has been tested politically in many countries, successfully enforced, and is popular with the public.

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