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United Arab of Emirates considers restricting ownership of exotic pets

A hungry cheetah trapped in a suburban backyard, baboons roaming the street, or a tiger riding in the car down the street.

Encounters between civilians and "exotic pets" have become such a problem in the United Arab Emirates that the authorities are considering how to end the wildlife trade.

Earlier this year, Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, chaired the Ministerial Council for Services meeting in Abu Dhabi city and ordered clear instructions to start working on a law that regulates and possession of dangerous wild animals in the United Arab of Emirates.
The Council has given directives to the Ministry of Environment to draft necessary laws to prevent this practice. WAM reported.

Last year the city of Ajman issued local order No. 54 which bans keeping wild animals, un-domesticated animals and reptiles in houses and under current legislation a fine of US$ 2700 for those who will not follow the new local law.

The International Fund For Animal Welfare’s Middle East North Africa office has been working to curtail the wildlife trade by educating and raising awareness, publishing kids’ books, and organizing wildlife law enforcement training. Currently, they are running a public awareness campaign called Think Twice calling on residents of the United Arab Emirates to reject the notion of owning these magnificent but dangerous wild animals.

Picture of a "domesticated" cheetah courtesy of IFAW

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