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Our Work in Jordan

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Follow Julie’s inspiring journey—from witnessing suffering to sparking changeto help improve the lives of donkeys and horses in Petra, Jordan.

Julie H and her colleague pose for a picture with staff from the Petra Veterinary Clinic in Petra, Jordan.

Civil Unrest in Jordan Blocks Animals From Receiving Care

The PETA-supported free veterinary clinic in Jordan is back helping animals in Petra. 

Donkeys wait in the sweltering desert sun, without access to food or water, while their handlers goad tourists into riding the animals up and down the 900 crumbling stone steps to a monastery.

 Animals forced to work in the tourism industry can’t seem to catch a break—even when they don’t have to haul tourists around, straining their sensitive backs. Widespread anger and unrest among Jordan’s Bedouin community are making it impossible for the veterinary clinic, supported by PETA’s Global Compassion Fund, to reach injured donkeys, camels, and other animals—who have nowhere else to turn for free care. Once again, the government has failed to pay animal handlers the monthly wages that it vowed to honor, which has resulted in an eruption of violence that has forced tourists and others to flee to safety. Staff are on standby to get back into the area as soon as possible in order to help the animals. Check this page for updates as the situation unfolds. 

Handlers wield sharp sticks and other objects as whips to force donkeys to move along for the next paying customer.

After being blocked by a near riot and gunfire between the Bedouin villagers and the government, the PETA-supported veterinary clinic is back in action today! With the violence that erupted earlier this week under control—at least for now—staff are again providing the animals with care. Villagers say they still haven’t received their promised pay from the government—including those who replaced their horse-drawn carts with the electric vehicles supplied by the Ministry of Tourism. As a result, horse owners are using their weary animals to fill the income gap by forcing them to haul heavy carts loaded with tourists around the archeological site. Veterinarians, concerned about the number of donkeys, mules, and camels now being used at Petra, are treating sore limbs, colic, infections, and other ailments. 

To support the clinic and its work, please donate to PETA’s Global Compassion Fund. 

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