Jakarta moves to ban masked monkey shows

Jakarta moves to ban masked monkey shows
A masked monkey.

JAKARTA - The city administration wants to clear the long-tailed monkeys used in the popular roadside topeng monyet (masked monkey) shows off the capital's streets, in a bid to protect the monkeys, which inhabit Jakarta's northern coast, beritajakarta.com reported over the weekend.

"The monkeys are exploited by their owners and it has become an international issue," Governor Joko "Jokowi" Widodo said on Friday, adding the administration had gathered data on the street performers with monkeys. He said the monkeys would be placed in a special enclosure in Ragunan Zoo, South Jakarta.

Jokowi said the administration had also prepared work training for the street performers to support its latest policy.

The administration will rollout a "Free Jakarta from Topeng Monyet" campaign in 2014, the posters of which will see the governor calling on the public not to abuse the primates, as if they do, they may be violating the Criminal Code on animal abuse and negligence.

The law states that violators face a maximum of seven years in prison. The posters also contain warnings that monkeys can act as hosts for human diseases and thus should not be treated as house pets.

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