Accessibility links

Breaking News

Dead Tiger Cubs Discovered in Buddhist Temple in Thailand

In this May 30, 2016, photo, wildlife officials sedate a tiger at the "Tiger Temple" in Saiyok district in Kanchanaburi province, west of Bangkok, Thailand. Wildlife officials in Thailand on Monday began removing some of the 137 tigers held at a Buddhist temple following accusations that the monks were involved in illegal breeding and trafficking of the animals.

Wildlife authorities in Thailand say they have discovered the carcasses of 40 tiger cubs in a Buddhist temple long suspected of engaging in animal trafficking and abuse.

The dead cubs were discovered in a freezer as officials were removing dozens of live adult tigers from the temple in the Kanchanaburi province, located west of the capital of Bangkok.

The temple has been a long-sought attraction for tourists who pay a fee to be photographed next to the cubs and other exotic animal species — putting the monks at odds with Thai authorities and animal rights activists.

The monks have been accused of taking part in the lucrative black market wildlife trade, supplying the demand for tiger parts that are used in traditional Chinese medicine.

In a statement posted on its Facebook page, the temple says it has stopped cremating cubs that died soon after birth.