16th January 2006
GREEN EURO MP WELCOMES NEW HOPE FOR MOON BEARS
The European Parliament today requested that the Chinese Government
initiate a countrywide ban over the farming of bear bile by the 2008
Beijing Olympic Games, as a Written Declaration on the issue was passed.
London’s Green MEP, Jean Lambert, who signed the Written Declaration and
helped launch the campaign in the European Parliament, has welcomed the
step-forward and urged London to address it’s own ethical standards
before the 2012 Olympics.
Jean has continued to support the ‘Moon Bears’ campaign with Animals
Asia Foundation that has seen over 40 bear farms closed down by the
Chinese Government since October 2000. Jean was pleased that the Written
Declaration, only the 5^th to be adopted this mandate, was passed and
commented; “Bear bile farming is a vile practice and is clear cruelty
when there are over 50 herbal and synthetic, cheaper and equally
efficacious alternatives available. China’s Department of Wildlife
Conservation may have rejected the resolution on the grounds that it is
used for medical benefits but this cannot be argued when bear bile is
used in shampoo.
“Although the Chinese Government has recently made positive efforts to
work with the Animals Asia Foundation and free the bears, many more
remain in captivity. The Written Declaration will formally acknowledge
and request that further action is taken with the aim to ban the
barbaric practice completely. The 2008 Beijing Olympics provides a clear
opportunity for this. It is not acceptable that a major city, hosting
the Olympic games, takes part in unethical customs and I urge London to
address our own ethical standards before we are Olympic hosts in 2012.”
The Asiatic Black Bear, also known as Moon Bears for the beautiful
golden crescent across their chests, are one of the eight bear species
in the world listed under the Convention of International Trade in
Endangered Species (CITES), but almost one third of their population,
more than 7,000 bears are locked up in cages on 212 farms across China.
The bears are ‘milked’ for their bile up to twice a day often through
catheters implanted in their gall bladders. The extradition causes
severe physical and mental pain. Those that are rescued through the
Animals Asia Foundation are taken to the Moon Bear Rescue Sanctuary at
Chengdu. They are released from their cages and treated by a veterinary
team through surgery to remove their damaged gall bladders.