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Baba is gaining support and attention

mars 26, 2013

A petition campaign demanding freedom for Baba has passed 4.000 signatures and is signed by people from countries across the world. In western Norway where Baba now is travelling with the Cirkus Merano, there is political action to bring attention to her situation.

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The petition campaign was started Victoria Ivansdatter Udnæs from Norway as a private initiative and is sponsored by the animal rights organisation NOAH. In one to two weeks it has quickly gained support and has 4.140 signatures at the moment of writing this article. The goal of the campaign at the start was 1.000 and now is 10.000 signatures.

The initiative was motivated by the frustrating situation concerning elephants in circus in Norway, outlined by «The World of Baba» in the article «Exploding a Norwegian myth». As stated in the petition text: «Animal rights advocates were one step away from getting a ban against circus elephants in Norway. The governmental Mattilsynet proposed a ban starting in 2015. However, the Minister of Agriculture, Trygve Slagsvold Vedum, overruled this advice in October 2012 and decided to continue to allow elephants to perform in Norway».

Yesterday the liberal political party «Venstre» in Bergen, Norway as reported by the newspaper BA filed a message of concern with the local Food Safety Authority asking for an inspection of the Cirkus Merano to control the welfare and health of Baba. The circus is arriving in Bergen on March 31 and will have a series of performances there. The circus started its 2013 season on March 1. It has by now travelled from the eastern part of the country round the southern tip of Norway up the west coast in temperatures below zero and with performances almost every day.

«It has been well documented that this elephant suffering in captivity, in the same way as other circus elephants do», Per-Arne Larsen, deputy leader of the local Bergen Venstre said to the newspaper. The press contact at Cirkus Merano stated that there are no reason to worry about Baba and asked the local political representatives to stop behaving like «fjompenisser», a Norwegian expression for behaving like a fool.

Julie Andersland, the lead of Bergen Venstre, in an e-mail informed the newspaper that her party will in April renew its effort from last year to a have a local ban on the use of wild animals in circus and that the local authorities refuse to let circuses perform in public ground in Bergen. «The city of Bergen must take responsibility», she stated.

The Norwegian Food Safety Authortiy does not want to allow elephants in circuses, said senior advisor Maria Været Veggeland to the BA. «The Ministry (of Agriculture) however, wants elephants in circuses and it is they who ultimately decide», she added. The Food Safety Authority is working on new regulations following the Ministry’s decision to continue to allow elephants in Norwegian circuses.

Related stories : «Exploding a Norwegian myth», «When terror strikes – Baba’s story (1)» and «The sad World of Baba». See also expert interviews with Dame Daphne Sheldrick, Marion E. Garaï and Gay Bradshaw.

Text: Inge Sellevåg

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From → About Baba, Help Baba

2 kommentarer
  1. marte permalink

    jeg så baba idag, sunnmøre. Helt forferdelig. står å nikker frem og tilbake konstant, ser sorgen i øynene hennes, det river i hjertet mitt, fatter ikke at dette er lovlig. ER DE MULIG!

    Uansett, jeg ropte baba! ville se om hun sluttet å kaste seg frem og tilbake, men det gjorde hun ikke. en trener sto i bakgrunnen å la merke til jeg flimet situasjonen og prøvde å gi henne signal om å slutte. Jeg skalv av sinne,redsel,frustrasjon og oppgitthet.. jeg sendte elefanten litt kjærlighet og kjørte hjem, men fikk følelsen av at jeg måtte tilbake…da jeg kom tilbake var cirkuset i full sving, baba var ute alene… baba hadde gått forbi gjerde sitt og komt ut på siden av en liten mark på hjørnet på cirkuset. jeg nøyt å se at hun gikk fri, sto å så når hun spiste ta trærne og følte gresse under beina, hun var helt rolig… hun så på meg.. så kom der en mann springende og ropte BABY!! BABY!!! å prøvde å styre elefanten tilbake i gjerdet, hun ble frustrert over behandlingen og tempraturen til mannen, hun la snablen på en av cirkusbilene å ga uttrykk for hun helst ville kaste den til… ja… men så møtte den blikket mitt igjen, hun strakte ut snablen å jeg strakte ut hånden og hun holdt meg forsiktig i hånden, så slapp hun. så kom en dame med pisk stormende og jagde henne tilbake der hun fortsatte sin tragiske adferd…. da jeg kjørte derifra følgte hun bilen min med hode… jeg føler hun vil ha hjelp. dette er jo helt tragisk!

  2. Fantastisk bloggkonsept! 🙂

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