Posted: 17 February 2014
Animal Defenders International (ADI) has today released an undercover investigation that reveals shocking conditions and violations of animal protection law in South Korea at “Monkey School,” an attraction that forces monkeys to perform in shows:
The scenes in South Korea show the same poor living conditions and appalling attitudes to animals that are universal to the performing animals industry that ADI has documented in the US and around the world at circuses and suppliers of performing animals for movies, advertising and television (1).
ADI is calling for US citizens not to attend shows with live animal performances, to contact their Member of Congress to support legislation to end the use of wild animals in circuses and sign the petition to end wild animal performances in South Korea.
The ADI investigation of Monkey School in South Korea reveals: squalid and barren living conditions; traumatized animals showing psychotic behavior; animals found dead in cages; animals hit during training; and animals dragged along the floor by their necks.
ADI President, Jan Creamer: “Our investigation of Monkey School in South Korea has shown that performing animals endure extreme cruelty behind the scenes, just as we have found in the US, where we discovered beatings of elephants and other animals, use of electric shocks and the barren, deprived conditions that make animals go out of their minds. Countries around the world are banning animal performances and we hope to see the US do the same. US citizens can stop the cruelty by refusing to watch animal shows and signing our petition supporting South Korea’s new Zoo Act.”
Sharon Shaw, Director of Lakeview Monkey Sanctuary in the UK said: “All aspects of life for primates at Monkey School are appalling, from the inadequate and atrocious housing conditions, the physical and psychological torture, to the lack of empathy and respect shown by the staff. The poor animals who are unlucky enough to live there endure a barbaric, unnatural life.”
South Korea’s animal protection law is limited (2), yet ADI’s investigation has revealed violations by Monkey School including finding a monkey dead, having received no medical treatment; and animals moved to new enclosures without any provision to help them adapt to their new environment.
Congresswoman Hanna Chang has proposed a Zoo Act in South Korea that would ban circus-style animal performances and set minimum welfare standards and inspections for places that exhibit captive animals (3). Congresswoman Chang said: “As seen in the ADI footage, it is hard to imagine the pain that monkeys have to go through for humans every day. This clearly shows that it is now time to have regulations to monitor the welfare of animals in captivity in Korea.”
ADI and its South Korean campaigns partner Korean Animal Rights Alliance have joined over 80 international animal organizations supporting the new Zoo Act (4). The international petition supporting South Korea’s Zoo Act can be signed at: http://bit.ly/ADIKoreaPetition
Twenty five countries around the world have restricted circus animal performances, including Austria, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Greece, Hungary, India, Israel, Poland, Portugal, Peru, Singapore, Sweden and Taiwan (5). The US and Korea are among several countries currently discussing bans on circus animals including Ireland, the UK, Brazil and Germany.
Lori De Waal, t: 323-462-4122. E: email@example.com
Regina Zernay, t: 323-804-9920. E: firstname.lastname@example.org
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NOTES – NOT FOR PUBLICATION:
1. ADI undercover investigation at Have Trunk Will Travel
ADI undercover investigation at Hall’s Bears
ADI Science on Suffering report
2. South Korean Animal Protection Law. ADI highlights violations to Articles 6.2 and 6.3
3. The Zoo Act was proposed September 27, 2013 by M.P. Hanna Chang
4. Asia for Animals coalition letter supporting the South Korean Zoo Act
5. National restrictions on performing animals in traveling circuses, either wild or all animals, have been enacted in 25 countries, including Austria, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Greece, Hungary, India, Israel, Poland, Portugal, Peru, Singapore, Sweden and Taiwan. Countries currently discussing restrictions include Ireland, the UK, Brazil, the US and Germany, as well as South Korea
Animal Defenders International
With offices in Los Angeles, London, and Bogota, ADI campaigns across the globe on animals in entertainment, providing technical advice to governments, securing progressive animal protection legislation, drafting regulations and rescuing animals in distress. ADI has a worldwide reputation for providing video and photographic evidence exposing the behind-the-scenes suffering in industry and supporting this evidence with scientific research on captive wildlife and transport. ADI rescues animals all over the world, educates the public on animals and environmental issues. http://www.ad-international.org