From Tank to Tombstone: PETA Germany Sets up Chilling Orca ‘Cemetery’ Outside TUI Meeting

For Immediate Release:

14 February 2019


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 222; [email protected]


Campaign Calls On Travel Group to Drop Marine Abusement Park From Its Itineraries

London – This week, a sombre “graveyard” of “headstones” – each marked to memorialise an orca who died on SeaWorld’s watch – haunted TUI’s annual general meeting in Hannover, Germany. An activist stood behind each “gravestone” while the meeting attendees arrived. The action is part of efforts by PETA and our international affiliates to pressure the travel provider to stop selling tickets to SeaWorld.

A representative of PETA Germany also attended the meeting, spoke about the campaign with shareholders and executives, and posed a question to TUI CEO Friedrich Joussen, asking when the company would be cutting ties with cruel marine parks that hold orcas captive.

The photo is also available here.

“Profiting from orca abuse is indefensible,” says PETA Director Elisa Allen. “PETA is calling on TUI to reject SeaWorld’s orca prisons, where intelligent marine mammals have no choice but to swim in endless circles around tiny concrete tanks.”

While orcas in the wild form complex relationships, work cooperatively to find food, and traverse up to 140 miles of ocean every day, those at SeaWorld are housed in incompatible groups in barren tanks and have even been given the drug diazepam to manage stress-induced aggressive behaviour. Forty-two orcas and countless other animals have died on SeaWorld’s watch – far short of their natural life expectancies.

Since October 2018, PETA and its international affiliates – whose mottos read, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” – have led protests outside numerous TUI branches across the UK, Germany, and the Netherlands. They’ve also prompted almost 75,000 people, including Sharon Osbourne, to write to the company to urge it to join other travel providers – including STA Travel and Responsible Travel – in refusing to sell tickets to SeaWorld.

Last year, following intense pressure from PETA, travel giant Thomas Cook announced that from summer 2019, it would stop selling tickets to all parks that confine orcas in the name of entertainment.

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