Government to Ban Dog Meat Sale at Yulin Festival

The groundbreaking decision will break with cultural tradition and ban the sale of dog meat ahead of the Yulin Dog Meat Festival this June.

Yulin’s newly elected Party Secretary Mo Gong Ming has initiated a ban on the sale of dog meat during the Yulin Dog Meat Festival in China that will take effect on June 15. The ban is not permanent and only applies to the festival—scheduled on June 21—but the animal-rights groups involved in pushing for the ban, including Humane Society International (HSI) and Chinese group Duo Duo Animal Welfare Project (DDAW), are hopeful. “Even if this is a temporary ban,” DDAW executive director Andrea Gung said, “we hope this will have a domino effect, leading to the collapse of the dog meat trade.” On the ground, Gung says, the younger Chinese population continues to reject the cruel festival and the numbers of dogs slaughtered for meat continues to decline each year. HSI, DDAW, and several other animal-rights organizations and celebrity animal activists (such as the late Carrie Fisher) have fought for years to persuade the Chinese government to shut down the festival and intend to continue to push for a permanent ban on the sale, slaughter, and consumption of dog and cat meat in the region. The ban will be strictly enforced during the festival and violators will be fined up to 100,000 yuan ($14,500) and face arrest.

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