Iran – following Greece, Mexico, the Netherlands, Belgium and Bolivia – has officially banned wild animal circuses across each of its 31 states. The move, which was made this week by the nation’s Department of Environment, will lead to the immediately closure of at least 13 wild animal circuses across the country.
The move – which has the nation refusing to issue any permits for the use of wild animals – is thanks in large part to efforts by the organizations Animal Rights Watch and Animal Defense International, who launched a No to Circus! campaign in 2014.
Despite a number of countries moving to ban wild animal circuses – including parts of Spain and Poland – they remain legal in most parts of the world, including in the United States where circuses featuring wild animals such as elephants, lions and monkeys can be found across the country.