ATHENS: The government of Greece has banned obese tourists from riding donkeys after animal rights activists complained about the growing abuse of animals in the country.
In their appeal to the government, the animal rights campaigners claimed that donkeys were being left with spinal injuries and open wounds.
The animals also work long hours, seven days a week without shelter, rest and water - leaving them with injuries and ill-fitting saddles, the activists claimed.
The government passed an order in this regard after images of donkeys climbing the narrow steps of the Greek island of Santorini carrying obese holidaymakers hit the headlines worldwide.
Respecting the sentiments expressed by the animal rights campaigners, the lawmakers in Greece pledged to do more to help the animals.
The Ministry of Rural Development and Food of Greece has published a new set of regulations regarding the well-being of donkeys after receiving multiple complaints following media coverage in July.
The new regulations state that donkeys giving tourists rides in Santorini should not carry any loads heavier than 220 pounds (100 kg), or one-fifth of their weight.