Target: Masoumeh Ebtekar, head of the Iranian Department of Environment
Goal: Shut down an Iranian zoo found mistreating its animals
The government of Iran must do all it can to shut down a zoo cited for abusing its animals. In particular, outrage has grown on Iranian social media over the chaining of a bear to a post. Hunters captured the wild bear four years ago and sold it to the zoo where it has endured heartbreaking mistreatment. Authorities later inspected Babolzar Zoo in the northern province of Mazandaran and have decided to sue the zoo, but fines alone do not go far enough to protect the bear and other animals from harm.
The zoo should be immediately shut down due to its poor facilities and lack of space. The animals should be released into the care of proper handlers. Conditions there make it seem more like a prison than a zoo. The poor bear mentioned above was chained by its neck to a post, only allowed to travel in a small circle. The treatment of this animal is a disgrace.
The Iranian public and the international community are outraged by what they have learned about conditions at Babolzar Zoo. Fines and bad press are appropriate, but they are not sufficient. More must be done by the Department of Environment in order to set an example for animal handlers across Iran. Demand the zoo be closed once and for all, and that charges are brought against the handlers responsible.
Dear Ms. Ebtekar,
Recent revelations of the terrible conditions at Babolzar Zoo in Mazandaran, Iran have led to public outrage. Well-document mistreatment of a bear at the facility has been officially condemned; the Iranian government is suing the zoo over the conditions the bear was kept in as well as other abuses. But fines are not enough. No animal should have to suffer the malnourishment and confinement these animals are subjected to.
The Department of Environment should consider reforming its regulations on inspections so that atrocities like this do not occur in Iran again. While some action has been taken to address conditions, it took zoo visitors posting pictures on social media to initiate this response. I urge you to do all that you can to protect the animals of your country. Please, close Babolzar Zoo and bring those responsible for the mistreatment of its animals to justice.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Abu0804 via Wikimedia Commons