Friday 30 July 2004

Group wants orangutang kickboxing banned

International animal rights groups are urging Thailand to ban orangutang kickboxing fights that are being staged at a Bangkok safari park.

The owners of Safari World say the fights between the orangutangs, who wear shorts and gloves, are choreographed, and that no animal is harmed.

But animal rights groups say the animals are being exploited, and are destined for a miserable end when their fighting days are over.

Cyril Rosen, of the International Primate Protection League, told the Herald Sun: "It's outrageous. There's no question of it being justifiable in any sort of way.

"Most young animals are very flexible and they do what they are told - it's what happens to them afterwards.

"Their eventual fate is an early death."

But Safari World managing director Pin Kewkacha said: "If we were doing a cruel show we do not have to let anyone tell us. We would cancel it ourselves."

The orangutangs are accompanied by bikini-clad chimpanzees who wear bout number cards.

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