UAE warns residents of their desire for exotic animals

UAE warns residents of their desire for exotic animals The Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD) warned the residents against their desire to have exotic animals. The body may slap fine up to AED50,000 and six months in jail if it transgress any law pertaining to safety of endangered species. The warning came just after a UAE man was arrested at Bangkok International Airport for owning the baby leopards in his suitcase and was trying heading toward UAE.

Anti-trafficking group FREELAND Foundation said on its website in May that baby leopards, panthers, a bear and monkeys were drugged by the smugglers who intended to send them in Dubai, apparently for their vested interests.

Abdulrab Al Hemari, deputy manager, CITES Scientific Authority at EAD said that people must understand the consequences of buying wildlife illegally. The department may take strict action against such elements. He said that people must be educated on endangered species and it is not possible to curb the menace only through legislation.

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, secretary general of EAD, added: "The UAE is a nation of animal lovers. Certain species are intrinsically linked to our natural heritage and this is something of which we should be rightfully proud."