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British singer urges closure of Indonesian "death" zoo

Jakarta - British singer Morrissey has urged the Indonesian government to close down a zoo in the country's second largest city after a spate of animal deaths, the group People for the EthicalTreatment of Animals (PETA) said Tuesday.



Morrissey, who was due to perform in Indonesia on Thursday, has sent a letter to Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan to convey his request, PETA said in a statement.

PETA said an average of 15 animals died a month at the zoo in Surabaya, the capital of East Java province.

"Your ministry called for a change at the Surabaya Zoo, but no improvements have been made," Morrissey was quoted as saying in the letter.

"There can be no justification for seemingly endless debates and delays while animals continue to suffer and die," he said.

"Please take immediate action to close the Surabaya Zoo and transfer its animals to more suitable environments." The Surabaya zoo has been criticised by animal rights campaigners for keeping animals in severely crowded, filthy and inadequate enclosures.

The Forestry Ministry revoked the zoo management’s licence in August and placed it under a new team following a series of animal deaths.

Local media reported the zoo had lost a Sumatran tiger, an African lion, a Komodo dragon, a crocodile and several birds in recent months.

In March, the zoo’s only remaining giraffe died after ingesting almost 20 kilograms of plastic believed to have been trash thrown into the animal’s enclosure.//DPA


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