As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread rampantly around the world, China has re-opened its infamous wet markets, where COVID-19 originated from.

China's wet markets essentially sell meat, fish as well as exotic animals and are notorious for its unsanitary conditions, which makes them a hotbed for deadly bacteria and viruses like COVID-19.

China's wet markets – a breeding ground for deadly viruses

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The Huanan wet market considered to be 'ground zero' for the virus, according to experts wikimediacommons

In fact, the coronavirus outbreak has been traced back to a Wuhan wet market where wild animals like bats, civets and pangolins were being sold. The said market was shut down in January and in February, China declared an immediate and permanent ban on the trade and consumption of wildlife following enormous pressure from other countries to end the trade of exotic animals.

Markets continue to sell bats and other wild animals

Bats, rats, snakes still for sale in Indonesian market amid coronavirus fears
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However, it appears that China has re-opened some of its wet markets, potentially exposing the world to another deadly outbreak in the future. As new cases of the coronavirus continue to decline in China, Daily Mail reported that wet markets have reopened across the country.

According to the publication, at one of the markets, located in the southern Chinese city of Guilin, cats and dogs were being sold for their meat while rabbits and ducks were being slaughtered on a dirty stone floor. At another market in Dongguan, a vendor was photographed advertising the sale of bats, scorpions, snakes, lizards, and other exotic wild animals despite being fully aware that bats and pangolins were identified as carriers of the COVID-19 virus.

"Everyone here believes the outbreak is over and there's nothing to worry about any more. It's just a foreign problem now as far as they are concerned," one of the correspondents said.

Photography not allowed

wildlife market in China
A wildlife market in China's Hunan province. Wikimedia Commons / Ye Wei

The Dongguan reporter noted that the markets are operating just like they used to before the coronavirus outbreak, with the only exception being that now security guards do not permit people to take pictures.

"The markets have gone back to operating in exactly the same way as they did before coronavirus," the correspondent said. "The only difference is that security guards try to stop anyone taking pictures which would never have happened before."

Outrage on social media

Several concerned netizens from China and around the world have taken to social media to express their anger over the re-opening of animal markets and putting the world at risk of another pandemic. "Evidence shows that coronavirus possibly comes from wild animals. While the world is suffering from the outbreak, people in mainland China do not care anymore," wrote one user. "Wet markets are open again. They have not learned their lesson, but the world is paying for it."

"Are we just going to let China get away with poisoning the world with COVID-19? And then they reopen their disgusting, filth-ridden, disease-spawning wet markets? The Chinese government is treating the whole world with contempt," commented another. "They must not get away with it."

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