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Cambodia to Implement Ban on Elephant Rides at Angkor Wat Temple

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  • Cambodia has announced that they will soon be banning elephant tourism at Angkor Wat Temple come 2020.
  • Elephant rides have always been one of the top tourist attractions in the area.
  • The news about the has been well-received by animal rights advocates everywhere.

Cambodia’s Angkor Wat Temple attracts more than 2.5 million visitors each year. Moreover, a significant percentage of these visitors often look forward to riding elephants, which is often considered as the most popular attraction in the area.

Things, however, will soon change as the Angkor Elephant Group Committee recently made an official announcement that the animals will be relocated to a conservation and breeding center by 2020.

This is the end of elephant tourism in Cambodia! Elephant rides will soon be banned at the Angkor Wat Temple.

In a Metro interview, Angkor Elephant Group Committee director Oan Kiry shared that while the animals would still be seen in the area, they will not be overworked like before.

As Kiry explained:

“In early 2020, our association plans to end the use of elephants to transport tourists. ‘They can still watch the elephants and take photos of them in our conservation and breeding center. We want the elephants to live in as natural a manner as possible.”

Elephant tourism is animal cruelty, according to many.

Fortunately, actions are now being taken to ensure the safety of the elephants.

Neth Pheaktra, Ministry of Enivornment spokesperson, has assured the public that the government is “working with relevant organizations” to preserve the elephants and avoid untoward incidents such as when, in 2016, one of the elephants collapsed and died because of harsh working conditions.

Steps are also being taken towards protecting the forests and strengthening laws against illegal animal hunting.

Public clamor against elephant tourism has increased since 2016 when Sambo the Elephant died of exhaustion while carrying two tourists.
Watch this video about Sambo the Elephant:

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