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Printed: 15.07.2024.

PrintSaeima bans use of wild animals in circus shows in Latvia

BC, Riga, 15.06.2017.
Saeima today passed in the final reading amendments to the Animal Protection Law, banning use of wild animals in circus shows, even though the responsible committee earlier had supported a different wording for the bill, writes LETA.


The majority of lawmakers decided not to support the proposal of the national economy, rural, environment and regional policy committee, allowing to feature animals born in captivity in circus performances.

As reported, in 2015, the Latvian Food and Veterinary Service proposed to ban using animals in circus after talks with animal rights groups and a workgroup was formed to draw up the respective legislative amendments.

Several other European countries have already banned using animals in circus shows. Local circuses in Latvia do not keep their own animals. All wild animals that are used in circus performances in Latvia are brought to Latvia by traveling circus troupes from foreign countries.

The Latvian animal rights organization Dzivnieku Briviba (Animal Freedom) submitted to the parliament a petition, titled For a Humane Circus and signed by more than 26,000 people, in a bid to stop animals being used in circus shows.

About 250 people have gathered by the Saeima building today to protest against use of wild animals in circus shows, while some 40 activists were gathered in support of animals in circus.