Kiev Zoo: A 'Concentration Camp' for Animals

Loads of deaths prompt allegations of corruption
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 24, 2011 12:08 PM CDT
Boy, a 39-year-old Indian elephant lies in his pen covered with a cloth in the Kiev Zoo after he collapsed and died, in this April 26, 2010 file photo.   (AP Photo/ UNIAN, File)
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(Newser) – Animals die at the Kiev Zoo... a lot. In recent years, zookeepers have done such a spectacularly poor job at keeping their tenants breathing that animal rights groups have begun wondering aloud if it's some kind of plot to destroy the facility, the AP reports. When new management took over in October, it said that nearly half the zoo's animals had either died or mysteriously disappeared in the past two years alone—and the management change hasn't stopped the bodies from piling up since.

Animal rights groups say animals are malnourished and mistreated. "The zoo is in such a condition that it's no longer a zoo, it's a concentration camp," said one activist. A government audit of the zoo has found that animals had been illegally sold off, and that the money allocated for their food and care had vanished. Some activists even suspect the deaths are a deliberate attempt to destroy the zoo, so that its prime central-Kiev real estate can be sold off.

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