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Amid a diplomatic freeze between London and Beijing, two giant pandas leave the UK and return to China

Amid a diplomatic freeze between London and Beijing, two giant pandas leave the UK and return to China

The return of the pandas is part of a wider movement to repatriate the animals to China, while tensions are felt between the country and Western powers.

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Two Chinese pandas Yang Guang and Tian Tian left Edinburgh Zoo (Scotland) on December 4, 2023.  (EDIMBURGH ZOO / Facebook)

Two giant pandas loaned to the United Kingdom in 2011 flew back to China on Monday, December 4, as diplomatic relations between London and Beijing cooled. Announced by Edinburgh Zoo (Scotland). FacebookYang Guang, a man, and Tian Tian, ​​a woman, board a cargo plane that will take them to Chengdu, Sichuan Province.

Scientists have long believed that the two, who arrived in 2011, would use the Scottish shelter to breed, but the animals have not had children. Yang Guang and Tian Tian were loaned as part of a 10-year agreement between the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland and the Chinese Wildlife Conservation Society.

A New Phase in “Panda Diplomacy”.

These are the only specimens of this endangered species in the United Kingdom. Yang Guang and Tian Tian visited the “panda diplomacy” led by Beijing, which sent these animals to twenty countries to seal progress in its diplomatic relations. But relations between China and some Western powers, including the United States and the United Kingdom, have strained in recent years.

Last month, three giant pandas on loan from the Washington Zoo since 2000 were returned to China, the channel reported. CBS News. The other four pandas are slated to leave Zoo Atlanta in 2024.

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