Wuhan bans consumption of wildlife animals as COVID-19 cases surge

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Published on the city government's official website on Wednesday, the new regulations totally ban the consumption of all terrestrial wild animals, rare and endangered aquatic wildlife that are under special state protection and other wildlife, and other wildlife that are protected by provincial or national laws. The five-year ban also prohibits the breeding of wild animals for food, according to the Independent. Wildlife in China is still being used for making alternate medicines and research and experts have said that only a complete ban on wildlife trade can prevent another virus outbreak.

A moist market in Wuhan, the place dwell animals are bought for meals, has been extensively considered floor zero for the lethal pandemic that has killed over 325,000 folks worldwide.

There is now no evidence that supports the fact that the market caused the virus.

Experts in China said in January that the virus had likely jumped on to humans from wild animals sold as food at a wet market in the city of 11 million.

© Provided by CBS News A civet cat stall is closed at a wildlife market in Guangzhou, capital of south China's Guangdong Province, January 5, 2004.

Though it hasn't been confirmed, one of the suspected sources of the virus is the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, which had a live animal section reportedly selling everything from live wolf pups to scorpions.

Although Beijing implemented measures to ban the trade and consumption of wild animals after the SARS outbreak, these failed to bring the trade to a halt.

Animal rights group Humane Society International (HSI) said Hunan and Jiangxi are "major wildlife breeding provinces", with Jiangxi seeing a rapid expansion of the trade over the last decade.

Earlier this month, the World Health Organization (WHO) urged governments around the world to "rigorously enforce" bans on the trade of wildlife for food. Furthermore, town's territory has been labeled a wildlife sanctuary, and even looking wild animals with no legitimate motive - akin to scientific analysis - has additionally been prohibited.

Wuhan, the city in China where the first cases of the novel coronavirus were reported late past year, has banned the eating of wild animals and is paying farmers to stop breeding exotic animals. It extended the prohibition on the consumption, breeding, and sale of wildlife.



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