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Demand China Permanently Close All Live Wild Animal Markets

Demand China Permanently Close All Live Wild Animal Markets 

Name: Closure of China's Inhumane Wild Animals Markets

Caged DogsThis year, while the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps the world, more and more evidence has surfaced linking live wild animal markets (also called “wet” markets) in Wuhan, China with the outbreak of the virus. The conditions of these filthy, crowded markets, as well as the presence of bats, who are the species attributed with the zoonotic leap between other species and humans, make the live wild animal market in Wuhan ground zero for this pandemic.

Just this past week, a spate of new articles and op-ed pieces by prominent journalists and scientists has focused on the culpability of these markets in sparking the global pandemic and the need to permanently close them down. Though the markets are now closed, these articles all voice concerns about the possibility of China’s reopening the Wuhan market, as well as other live wildlife markets around the country.

One compelling article, published in The Asian Dialogue, is “The COVID-19 epidemic and China’s wildlife business interest,” by Peter J. Li, Associate Professor of East Asian Politics at the University of Houston-Downtown. This article paints a chilling picture of the role wildlife business interests play in China.

According to Prof. Li, a Wildlife Protection Law enacted by Chinese authorities in 1989 “was for the protection of this business interest rather than wildlife.” Though revised in 2016, it “remains a law which defends the wildlife business interest,” while “China’s wildlife has experienced an unprecedented crisis of survival.”

The concerns highlighted in this article raise questions about China’s commitment to protecting the world’s population from disease in light of their strong support of a “wildlife protection industry” that is aimed more at protecting the exploitation of wildlife by business interests than preservation of animals in the wild.

The SARS epidemic also allegedly got its start at one of China’s live wildlife markets—and two such epidemics should be more than enough evidence to shut down these markets permanently. That may not, however, be sufficient to cause China to act. The U.S. cannot, therefore, leave China’s decision to chance.

 

Call to Actions:

  1. Please contact the U.S. State Department and demand that they use every tool available to persuade China to close down wild animal markets permanently.
  2. Spread the word! Share this page with your social network.

 

 

Recipients

  • Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State

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Message

Demand China close its live wildlife markets for good

Dear [Decision Maker],

Since the early days of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, fingers have been pointed at live wild animal markets in Wuhan, China as a probable source of the outbreak of disease. These same types of "wet" markets were believed to be the source of the SARS epidemic in the 1990s, because the crowded, inhumane conditions of these markets are prime breeding grounds for diseases. They also provide ample opportunity for diseases to cross the species barrier between animals and humans.

Just this past week, a spate of new articles and op-ed pieces by prominent journalists and scientists has focused on the culpability of these markets in sparking the global pandemic and the need to permanently close them down.

One compelling article, published in The Asian Dialogue, is "The COVID-19 epidemic and China's wildlife business interest," by Peter J. Li, Associate Professor of East Asian Politics at the University of Houston-Downtown. This article paints a chilling picture of the role wildlife business interests play in China.

According to Prof. Li, the Wildlife Protection Law enacted by Chinese authorities in 1989 "was for the protection of this business interest rather than wildlife." Though revised in 2016, it "remains a law which defends the wildlife business interest," while "China's wildlife has experienced an unprecedented crisis of survival."

The concerns highlighted in this article raise questions about China's commitment to protecting the world's population from disease in light of their strong support of a "wildlife protection industry" that is aimed more at protecting the exploitation of wildlife by business interests than preservation of animals in the wild. The interests of the entire planet are impacted by China's priorities in this regard.

The safety and health of people in the U.S. and around the world who are impacted by the results of keeping animals in filthy and inhumane conditions should be of paramount importance.

Please use every tool in the U.S. arsenal to ensure that China dismantles all of its live wild animal markets, which risk creating a hotbed for the spread of yet another global--and deadly--zoonotic pandemic.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]