As of March 20, Iran’s Department of Environment has officially banned wild animal circuses. Thanks to animal-rights organization Animal Rights Watch (ARW) and with the support of Animal Defenders International (ADI)—which launched the “No to Circus!” campaign in 2014—the Department of Environment issued the ban of using wildlife in circuses across all 31 Iranian states. While both ARW and ADI are working to push the initiative through to Parliament to ensure the prohibition stays in place, the current ban has effectively shut down 13 animal shows in the country. Iran joins a growing list of places—including Bolivia, Greece, Belgium, The Netherlands, Mexico, and parts of Spain and Poland—to say “no” to wild animal circuses. ADI is now focused on implementing similar bans in Peru with President Jan Creamer telling VegNews, “Public opinion is clear—cruelty to animals for human entertainment is not acceptable in this day and age. Now, it is time for countries like the UK and US to join Iran and 31 other countries around the world who have already introduced prohibitions on animals in circuses.”
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