Coronavirus News Asia

Pandemic caused by disrespect for animals: Goodall


World-renowned British primatologist Jane Goodall says the coronavirus pandemic was caused by humanity’s disregard for nature and disrespect for animals.

Goodall, who is best known for trail-blazing research in Africa that revealed the true nature of chimpanzees, pleaded for the world to learn from past mistakes to prevent future disasters.

During a conference call ahead of the release of the new National Geographic documentary “Jane Goodall: The Hope”, the 86-year-old also said everyone can make a difference.

Goodall said it is our disregard for nature and our disrespect of the animals we should share the planet with that has caused this pandemic, that was predicted long ago. 

“Because as we destroy, let’s say the forest, the different species of animals in the forest are forced into a proximity and therefore diseases are being passed from one animal to another, and that second animal is then most likely to infect humans as it is forced into closer contact with humans.

“It’s also the animals who are hunted for food, sold in markets in Africa or in the meat market for wild animals in Asia, especially China, and our intensive farms where we cruelly crowd together billions of animals around the world. These are the conditions that create an opportunity for the viruses to jump from animals across the species barrier to humans,” she said.

It is good that China closed down the live wild animal markets, in a temporary ban which she hoped would be made permanent, and other Asian countries will likely follow suit. 

“But in Africa it will be very difficult to stop the selling of bush meat because so many people rely on that for their livelihoods,” she said. 



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