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European tigers ending up on Asian market

2018-07-18

FOUR PAWS research and police raids in Czech Republic uncover ruthless tiger trade in Europe

 

Recent police raids in the Czech Republic as well as research by FOUR PAWS show that tiger trade is not only an issue in Asia: The lucrative commercial trade with a highly protected species and their parts is happening right in the centre of Europe as well.

FOUR PAWS has discovered that tiger traders operating in Europe are willing and able to sell and facilitate the transfer of tigers to Asian countries where demand for their parts for traditional medicine is causing mass cruelty and a decline of the species.



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At the same time Czech Authorities made a strike against wildlife traffickers and conducted a series of raids, because of the suspicion of killing of tigers in a zoo and the possession of tiger products by the Vietnamese community. One of the target facilities of the raids belonged to a well-known circus leader.

FOUR PAWS research conducted in June show a meeting with this person where he proudly showed his tiger breeding facility near Prague and discussed the sale of tigers to Asia. The trader offered to sell the tigers to Asian buyers and to help facilitate the documents and transfer.



Tigers: A highly endangered species

In the 20th century the world already lost over 90 per cent of its tigers with current estimates indicating that there are only 3,900 tigers left in the wild. The relentless demand for tigers traded for their parts but also to be displayed commercially significantly contributes to this decline of the species. Legal trade facilitates illegal trade and causes a real threat to the wild tiger population.

 

Shockingly, tigers born in Europe in captivity can still be traded for commercial purposes like circuses or for private keeping and for photo opportunities. In some European countries you can even rent a tiger for a private party!


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