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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Netizens rally to aid of captive seals (3)

By Liu Ce and Wu Yong  (China Daily)

08:39, March 01, 2012

Tian disagreed. "It's a serious violation of seals' rights. What is legal is not necessarily reasonable."

The Liaoning provincial marine and fishery bureau confirmed that raising seals requires a permit. The bureau sends experts to assess applicants' qualifications, including capital investment, breeding sites and disinfection facilities.

Permits are issued if all criteria are met. They are valid for five years and can be renewed.

However, according to the survey by Tian's association, one-third of the hotels have no permits, or ones that have expired. Also, there is no punishment for the unnatural deaths of the seals.

The Ministry of Agriculture announced in 2010 that permits would no longer be issued for raising State-protected animals. And existing permits will not be renewed when they expire.

Tian's efforts have seen some good results. A restaurant in Beijing, Regal Palace Chinese Restaurant at Chang An Grand Hotel, has contacted the association for professional help to treat a diseased seal that they raised.

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