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22 Feb, 2019 15:07

Putin orders immediate action to help 100 orcas and belugas held in cramped ‘whale prison’ (VIDEO)

Putin orders immediate action to help 100 orcas and belugas held in cramped ‘whale prison’ (VIDEO)

Belugas and orcas being kept in a “whale prison” are still waiting to be freed months after their unfit habitat was discovered by Russian authorities. President Vladimir Putin has ordered that the case be resolved by March 1.

Ninety belugas and 11 orcas held in tiny enclosures on Russia’s Pacific Coast are still awaiting rescue after investigators learned about their inhumane conditions in November. As a result, the operators of the “prison,” the Center for the Adaptation of Marine Mammals, located in a bay near the city of Nakhodka, have come under investigation – a process that has left the whales in limbo.

The whales were allegedly caught for educational and cultural purposes, but campaigners suspect these particular animals are due to be sold later to Chinese amusement parks.

Russian law does not explicitly prohibit the capture and selling of whales.

A video published by Ruptly shows more than six beluga whales crammed into a small pen. The whales are seen narrowly avoiding one another as they attempt to swim around their submerged “prison cell.” Several whales have allegedly died in the enclosures.

On Wednesday, Putin ordered the Ministry for the Protection of the Environment and Natural Resources to resolve the case by March 1 to prevent further unnecessary suffering.

Authorities reportedly plan to release the whales.

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