'Tiger temple' cleared of abuse

'Tiger temple' cleared of abuse

KANCHANABURI - Wildlife protection officers say they found no mistreatment of more than 100 tigers housed at a Buddhist temple that is a popular tourist attraction, though charges have been pressed for keeping rare birds.

About 50 officials from the wildlife department and local religious affairs office, along with soldiers, made a three-hour inspection on Thursday of Wat Pa Luangta Maha Bua, the Buddhist temple compound in Kanchanaburi known as the "Tiger Temple".

The wat is famous for its tame-looking big cats living alongside Buddhist monks. It has been accused of drugging the creatures to keep them tame. The monks and the veterinarian who takes care of the animals have denied the allegations.

A wildlife department raid last week found that the temple was illegally keeping 38 hornbills and other protected bird species.


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