From Times Online
The offspring of the 12 giant rabbits were supposed to help to feed starving North Koreans. Now doubts about their fate have brought an abrupt halt to one of the more unlikely hunger-alleviating projects.
Karl Szmolinsky sold the rabbits to Pyongyang so that they could be used to set up a breeding program to boost meat production in North Korea.
However, amid concerns that they have been eaten by the country’s leaders, Szmolinsky will not be sending any more.
The 68-year-old German rabbit breeder had been due to travel to North Korea after Easter to provide advice on setting up a rabbit farm. A North Korean official called him last week to say that the trip had been cancelled. Mr Szmolinsky said he suspected that his rabbits, which grow to the size of dogs and can weigh over 22 pounds were eaten at a birthday banquet for Kim Jong Il, the North Korean leader, although he emphasised that he had no evidence of this.
“It’s an assumption, not an assertion,” Mr Szmolinsky said. “But I don’t think the animals are alive anymore, I think they’ve been eaten. North Korea won’t be getting any more rabbits from me, they don’t even need to bother asking."
The North Korean Embassy in Berlin denied that the rabbits were dead. A spokesman said that they were being used for a breeding program, and had not been eaten. He added that no one at the embassy had contacted Szmolinsky.
His rabbits can yield up to 15 pounds of meat each. In January Szmolinsk said that the rabbits were being kept in a petting zoo in Pyongyang pending his arrival and that he would be prepared to deliver some more to North Korea.
Jason's snark: You've got to click the link to see this big ol' bunny. Happy Easter. Now hand over all the salad and step away from those carrots if you know what's good for you.
Thursday, April 5, 2007
From Times Online