A fire that broke out in Pata Pinklao Department Store in Bangkok yesterday has led to animal rights activists calling for the private zoo located there to be closed down permanently.
The sixth floor of the department store is home to the infamous Pata Zoo which hosts a private collection of animals including a 29-year-old gorilla.
The fire happened on the sixth floor where the zoo is located at the animal stage show area with investigations into how it started still ongoing. There were no reported causalities – either human or animal.
However, this did not stop animal rights activists from taking the opportunity to issue statements about the conditions in which animals are kept. PETA Asia representative, Nirali Shah said:
“Just when it seemed like the suffering of the animals at Pata Zoo couldn’t get any worse, it turns out it can. Confinement to cramped cages in which life consists of just pacing back and forth each day is enough to make anyone go crazy. Now, the effects of the fire mean these animals are suffering even more. It’s time to shut the zoo for good.”
The zoo owner, Kanit Sermsirimongkol, has continuously defended his zoo and the condition in which animals are kept, fighting off calls to free the animals are shut down the zoo.