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BEIJING: The city at the center of the coronavirus, Wuhan has banned the eating of wild animals.
Both moves come amid mounting pressure for China to crack down on the illegal wildlife trade blamed by many for the pandemic that has killed more than 320,000 people.
Lion, tiger, peacocks, and pangolin are now officially banned after a new policy was unveiled this week that prohibits the hunting, breeding consumption of wild animals. The policy has been implemented for five years.
The policy grants a ban on the consumption of snakes and bats. The latter, along with pangolins, are considered to be the source of the novel virus which jumped species and lodged on to humans.
Moreover, virtually hunting of wild animals has also been banned in Wuhan, declaring city ‘a wildlife sanctuary,’ with the exception of government-sanctioned hunting for scientific research, population regulation, monitoring of epidemic diseases, and other special circumstances.
The global trade in wild animals is worth approximately £60 million with 14 million people associated with it. The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is widely believed to have passed from bats to people, possibly via another species, before spreading worldwide.
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