Wuhan: China’s Wuhan, where the coronavirus pandemic was first detected, has finally implemented a five-year ban on the trade of illegal wildlife and the consumption of wild animals.Also Read - EBook 'Wuhan Diary: Dispatches from a Quarantined City' Releases in India, Audio to Follow Soon

As per CBS News, local officials in Wuhan announced on Wednesday that the eating of all wild animals is officially banned. The ban is intended to protect people’s health and safety, according to a statement issued by the Wuhan government. Also Read - Second Wave of Coronavirus in China? Wuhan to Now Test All 11 Million People

The city also places a restriction on artificial and farm breeding of such animals.

Further, Wuhan also banned all hunting of wild animals within its limits, declaring Wuhan “a wildlife sanctuary,” with the exception of government-sanctioned hunting for “scientific research, population regulation, monitoring of epidemic diseases and other special circumstances.”

The move comes after various countries and organizations had pressurized and urged China to crack down on the illegal wildlife trade, which is being blamed for the coronavirus pandemic.

Several scientists, medical experts, and animal rights activists have increasingly called for a ban on China’s wet markets where animals like bats, cats, dogs and pangolins are slaughtered and sold openly for human consumption.

The wet-markets, at closer proximity to humans, with high viral burden or strains of higher transmission efficiency, facilitate the transmission of the viruses to humans.