Online Petition Against SeaWorld Plan for Dubai
Almost 10,000 people worldwide have signed a petition urging Dubai’s government to axe plans for a SeaWorld theme park over fears of animal cruelty.
The most recent petition, on www.thepetitionsite.com, claims the park, which promotes whale shows as its main feature, treats its orcas in an “absolutely barbaric” way.
It says that in their natural habitat, orcas – the giant dolphins known as ‘killer whales’ – usually swim about 100 miles (160km) a day, living in Arctic conditions and deep at sea. By contrast, all of SeaWorld’s resorts are in hot climates, causing the mammals to catch sunburn and even harm themselves when they try to escape.
So far, the petition’s been signed by people saying they’re from Europe, the US, the UAE, Bahrain and Australia.
It states: “Dubai has a great reputation as a popular tourist destination for beautiful architecture, beautiful nature and kind hearted people, thus you should not tarnish your great reputation by allowing SeaWorld to open a SeaWorld park in Dubai.”
“SeaWorld is already one of the worst cases of wild animal abuse in the history of the United States and Australia (the two countries that SeaWorld unfortunately exists in) and SeaWorld should not be allowed to exist in Dubai as well.”
The US-based company SeaWorld Entertainment announced last May it had reached an agreement to “assess the viability of a multi-park development in the Middle East”, without identifying who the deal was with or where such attractions might be based.
It’s not commented on the discussions since, but animals rights activists are piling on the pressure, hoping they’ll prevent the plans ever seeing the light of day.