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ISTANBUL: October 6, 2018. Turkish Cargo’s latest zoo animal shipment includes four tigers, three lions, three cheetahs, two lynxes and one cougar from Czechia to Turkey.

The airline carried the predators from the Biopark STIT wildlife support facility 100kms. east of Prague, Czechia to Istanbul.

Turkish Cargo tiger and lionFounded in 2014, Biopark ŠTÍT is a private facility for breeding exotic and domestic animals threatened with extinction.

The animals were accompanies by veterinarians, animal keepers and IATA Live Animal Regulations-certificated Turkish Cargo personnel.

This latest move follows the transport of five endangered white rhinos from Johannesburg to Shanghai via Istanbul in August; the relocation of 10 lions, seven of which were cubs, from Johannesburg to Pakistan in June; and the delivery of 10 giraffes to Bangladesh, four elephants to the UAE, three monkeys from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to Ukraine, and three 16 months-old giraffes from Johannesburg to Tehran.

Turkish Cargo says it only carries live animals between qualified zoos, private institutions or acknowledged preservation and rehabilitation centers in order to prevent animal trafficking.

Last year the airline's chairman announced it had joined 40 companies and NGOs in signing the 'United for Wildlife' Buckingham Palace Declaration pledging zero-tolerance of illegal wildlife trafficking.

The group has committed to receive and exchange credible information about high-risk routes and methods of transportation; to develop a secure system for passing information about suspected illegal wildlife trade from the transport sector to relevant Customs and law enforcement; and to notify relevant authorities of cargoes suspected of containing illegal wildlife and their products and, where able, refuse to accept or ship such cargoes.

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