South Korea closes biggest dog meat market ahead of Winter Olympics
South Korea�s has started shutting down biggest dog meat market as the country prepares to host the 2018 Winter Olympics.
South Korea’s has started shutting down biggest dog meat market as the country prepares to host the 2018 Winter Olympics.
The country seeks to head off international criticism over its practice of killing dogs for human consumption, reported The Guardian.
Moran market in Seongnam sells more than 80,000 dogs, dead or alive, every year and accounts for about a third of South Korea’s dog meat consumption.
On Monday, officials and traders began removing butchery facilities and cages in which live animals are kept before they are slaughtered.
The decision to close the market came after animal welfare campaigners highlighted the inhumane conditions in which the animals were kept and the methods used to kill them: electrocution, hanging and beating.
The market’s closure has met with opposition, however. South Korean media reported that a handful of the 22 dog meat sellers who initially agreed to the move last December now oppose it, and are demanding compensation to make up for the loss of business.
“Almost 80% of our customers visit our shops to buy fresh dog meat, so what are they going to do if we cannot provide it for them? Is the government going to pay us?” Shin Seung-cheol, a Moran trader, told the Korea Herald.
For decades, dog meat sellers have taken advantage of a legal grey area: livestock hygiene laws do not apply to the killing and sale of dogs, making it difficult for authorities to regulate the industry.