Graphic images have exposed the cruel trade in dogs, cats and rare animals at a notorious meat market in North Indonesia.
Tomohon Extreme Market, located on the island of Sulawesi, is known for cruelty to animals including cats and dogs that are kept in small cages before they are beaten to death and sold.
The Norwegian Alf Jacob Nilsen (64) visited the market and said he felt that workers were being abused by workers as part of a twisted show that was meant to attract tourists.
Alf Jacob Nilsen, 64, a retired biologist and photographer from Norway, visited Tomohon Extreme Market, in northern Indonesia, which is notorious for selling endangered species such as bats (pictured) alongside cat and dog meat
The bats – known throughout Asia and Australia as flying foxes – are killed before being blown up to remove the fur and then sold, both as carcasses (bottom right) with wings sold separately (top)
Dogs and cats offered for sale on the market after they are scorched to remove their fur. Animal welfare campaigners have long been calling for the market to close, which they say is cruel and relies on pets that have been stolen by owners
Flying foxes with their wings removed lie on a stall to be sold at the market. Tomohon used to be listed as a top destination to visit on the island of Sulawesi until animal rights activists removed it
A market vendor who smokes a cigarette weighs dogs that must be sold. Nilsen described the experience of visiting the market as & # 39; terrible & # 39 ;, and said he felt that traders were inciting cruelty to attract tourists
The retired biologist and amateur photographer, from Hidra, Norway, said: & I have to admit that I had mixed feelings on the market – it's very hard to describe.
& # 39; Hundreds of residents offered bush food, dog meat, bats, chickens and fish for sale.
Many monkey species are protected according to Indonesian law and therefore cannot be hunted for food, and yet they are easy to buy on the Tomohon market
& # 39; The treatment and killing of dogs as it currently happens in Tomohon should definitely stop in my eyes.
& # 39; Not only because the poor animals are treated in a very brutal way and certainly suffer, but also because there must clearly be a risk of spreading parasites and serious diseases in dogs and dog meat in this way.
& # 39; It is terrible to see caged stray dogs pull out of their cages and beaten to death with wooden clubs.
& # 39; I got the feeling that this was somehow almost done as an attraction to attract more tourists.
& # 39; Another aspect that worried me a lot when I was there was that I thought I saw endangered species for sale, such as monkeys, bats, birds, snakes and other reptiles. & # 39;
Tomohon Extreme Market used to be on the list as a top tourist attraction on TripAdvisor until animal welfare reporting agents complained and shot.
But trade continues with the blessing of the regional authorities, who refused to meet campaigners and hear their concerns.
Many of the disturbing offers on the market are dogs and cats, many campaigners say they were stolen by owners before they illegally crossed the country to get here.
Enclosed in small metal cages, animals are often forced to watch as their cage mates are beaten to death with large pieces of wood, knowing that they are next.
Their bodies – often still in motion – are then fired to remove the fur before they can be sold.
Aside from animal abuse, campaigners say markets like Tomohon are a breeding ground for potentially deadly diseases such as rabies.
In addition to being cruel, campaigners have called on local authorities to shut down the market due to lack of sanitation, which they say is the perfect environment for potentially deadly diseases, including rabies to spread
Mr Nislen said that after visiting the market, there is no doubt that the dog meat trade (carcasses shown in the lower right) should be stopped because & # 39; the poor animals are being treated in a very brutal way and absolutely suffering & # 39;
A worker in blood-stained clothing shows dog carcasses for sale at the Tomohon market. Local authorities have repeatedly refused to meet animal campaigners trying to close the market
Snake skins and heads lie on a chopping block and the meat is for sale at the Tomohon market in northern Indonesia
Chickens are perhaps one of the more common items for sale at Tomohon, which is proud of selling dogs, cats, bats, monkeys, and other endangered reptiles.
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