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An online petition urging the World Health Organization (WHO) to shut down live-animal meat markets ‘that breed deadly diseases’ has nearly received 100,000 signatures.

Created by animal-rights charity PETA, the petition follows the coronavirus (COVID 19) breakout – which is believed to have started in a wet market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Since then, it has spread to countries around the world, killing more than 61,000 at the time of writing.

Despite being shut down amid the pandemic, multiple press reports state that wet markets have re-opened in China. While Shenzhen becomes the country’s first city to ban the consumption of dog and cat meat, as well as wildlife. 

‘A miserable death’

“Many wet markets continue to operate throughout Asia, Africa, Europe, and the U.S. There are more than 80 live-animal markets and slaughterhouses in New York City alone,” PETA states.

“Just as we don’t want to be infected with or die from COVID-19, other animals don’t want to suffer or be killed for food…No matter what species they are peddling, live-animal meat markets will continue to put the human population at risk as well as sentencing countless animals to a miserable death.”

You can find out more about PETA’s petition here

Liam Gilliver

Liam is the Deputy Editor and Social Media Coordinator for Plant Based News. He has written for a number of top publications including Gay Times, Attitude Magazine, Oh Comely, and The Huffington Post - and is the author of 'We're Worried About Him'.