Justice for Animals Allegedly Slaughtered for Entertainment’s Sake

Target: Han Wha-jin, Minister of Environment, South Korea

Goal: Abolish the Sancheoneo Ice Festival to prevent further alleged animal cruelty.

The Sancheoneo Ice Festival, a notable event since 2003 in Hwacheon County, reportedly involves grievous acts of animal cruelty. Activists claim these acts against sancheoneo, a trout species, include confinement, exploitation, and eventual slaughter. These allegations stem from practices like bare-hand fishing and ice fishing, causing undue stress and pain to the fish. Allegedly, the festival treats these creatures merely as objects of entertainment, a concern raised by several national civic organizations, including the Korean Vegetarian Union.

On January 7 and 12, gatherings and press conferences were held by 39 civic groups, including the Animal Liberation Wave and the Korean Federation for Environmental Movements. They highlighted the alleged cruelty at the festival and the apparent indifference of Hwacheon County officials to ethical treatment of fish. Shin Eun-sung, an activist, equated the festival’s practices to trapping and slaughtering sancheoneo in one place, a vivid depiction intended to shock and mobilize public opinion. These groups have also advocated for a shift from meat consumption to vegetarianism, linking the festival’s practices to broader issues of animal rights and ethical consumption.

The necessity for change arises not just from the alleged cruelty but also from the ethical implications of such festivals. The demand is clear: Hwacheon County must abolish the Sancheoneo Ice Festival and adopt more humane practices. Ensure that the rights and wellbeing of all creatures are respected and that festivals do not become a veil for alleged animal cruelty.


Dear Han Wha-jin,

Amidst growing concerns about the ethical treatment of animals, the Sancheoneo Ice Festival in Hwacheon County has come under scrutiny for alleged acts of animal cruelty. Allegations suggest that the festival’s activities, including bare-hand fishing and ice fishing, cause significant stress and pain to sancheoneo, leading to their eventual demise. These practices, reportedly for mere entertainment, raise serious ethical questions.

Furthering these concerns, several civic groups, including the Korean Vegetarian Union, have highlighted the need for a shift in perspective towards animal rights. Their demonstrations and press conferences have brought attention to the alleged inhumane treatment of fish at the festival. These acts, if true, are not only cruel but also contradict modern principles of animal welfare and ethical treatment. The festival, while a significant tourist attraction for Hwacheon County, should not come at the cost of alleged animal suffering.

Therefore, we urge you to take immediate action. The Sancheoneo Ice Festival must be abolished to prevent further alleged cruelty to these creatures. We implore you to consider alternative, more humane forms of tourism and entertainment that respect animal rights and align with ethical standards. It is time to prioritize compassion and ethics over traditional practices that allegedly cause harm to living beings.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: USFWS Mountain-Prairie

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