Nara Kim, campaigner for HSI, who attended the closure and rescue, says, “I cannot express enough my joy at helping to close down the dog meat shops and slaughterhouse at Gupo market. For decades they have stood as a very public symbol of the immense cruelty of the dog meat trade, with live dogs displayed in cages on the street for shoppers to select for slaughter by electrocution.
“The closure of Gupo’s dog meat market means the end of a gruesome era in South Korea’s dog meat history, and a sign of the times that law enforcement and local authorities are cracking down on this increasingly unpopular industry that most Koreans want nothing to do with.
“I know we have a long way to go to end the dog meat trade here, but even two years ago I would never have believed we would see such progress. It has been a pleasure to work with the Busan authorities, and especially in being able to save the last remaining dogs we found alive.”
The closure of Gupo is the latest in a series of crackdowns by officials on the cruel trade. In November last year, Seongnam city demolished Taepyeong, the country’s largest dog slaughterhouse, and closed down most of the related dog meat vendors. However, the closure of Gupo market is the first such closure where complete agreement has been reached between the vendors and local authorities.