WASHINGTON, DC – On November 26 at 12 noon, a herd of injured PETA “donkeys” in bandages and slings will “collapse” in front of the Embassy of Greece, 2217 Massachusetts Avenue NW (at the intersection with Sheridan Circle N.W.) in Washington, DC, to call for an end to Santorini’s notoriously inhumane donkey rides. The protest follows the release earlier this month of new undercover footage revealing that—one year after an explosive PETA expose of abused donkeys on the island sparked international outrage—the animals are still being beaten and forced to give rides without food or water.
Investigators on Santorini found donkeys and mules suffering with open sores, raw skin, and bloody injuries from ill-fitting and makeshift saddles. Often, the animals are hit with a stick by a handler while being forced to carry tourists up and down more than 500 slippery steps. When they’re not being forced to give rides, most of the animals are tethered in the scorching sun so tightly that they can’t even reach the one bucket of water available to them. The video also shows blatant flouting of the new 220-pound weight restriction, despite veterinary recommendations that donkeys shouldn’t carry more than 20% of their own—approximately 110 pounds.
“Donkey abuse on this tourist island is a disgrace to Greece,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “Pregnant, lame, exhausted animals struggle to carry people up hundreds of stone steps all day long as if they were machines, not flesh and blood.”
The protest is the second of several that PETA and its international affiliates are holding at Greek embassies around the world.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview.
For more information, please visit PETA.org.