Sunday, November 12, 2006

Dog owners bite back in China's great pet purge

China is killing oversized dogs and promoting a one-dog policy these days. This is one unhealthy way to celebrate the “Year of the Dog”. Beijing is already in the spotlight for animal cruelty and this one-dog policy won’t help their image any in the lead to the 2008 Olympics. The world’s pet lovers are watching and pointing the finger at China’s barbaric ways. It's time to take action.

Michael Sheridan: In an echo of the days when Chairman Mao denounced his foes as “running dogs”, hundreds of angry pet owners confronted the police in Beijing yesterday in a protest against the regime’s new “one-dog policy”.

Eighteen people were arrested in noisy scuffles as about 500 dog owners gathered in a rare unauthorized demonstration near Beijing Zoo.

Several of the middle-class protesters wore badges that read “stop the killing” and waved furry stuffed toys in the hope of softening the hearts of the riot police and plain-clothes security men who surrounded them.

One complained that the pet-lovers’ protest was treated as if Beijing were under martial law. Police cordoned off the area, massed hundreds of reinforcements in nearby streets and tried to stop photography and filming.

In cities all over China, dog lovers have been outraged, as police have swept through districts killing unlicensed dogs and confiscating others in a nationwide purge of the animals. (more)

OLYMPIC WATCH: Human Rights in China and Beijing 2008

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