Just weeks after a fire broke out at the Pata Zoo in Bangkok, Thailand, actor Gillian Anderson has sent the zoo’s owner a letter on behalf of PETA Asia asking him to close the exotic-animal menagerie in the Pata Department Store and send the animals to reputable sanctuaries.

“In these trying days, we are all experiencing the challenges of seclusion,” writes the X-Files and Sex Education star. “I can’t help but think about the animals in the Pata Zoo, who have experienced the same loneliness and isolation for years or even decades. In light of the recent fire that broke out at the zoo, I am writing to ask you to reflect honestly on what life is like for animals there and to come to the decision to close it.”

Animals at the Pata Zoo include Kat, an orangutan imprisoned with little opportunity for psychological stimulation or physical exercise, and Bua Noi, a gorilla who has been alone and behind bars since 1983. PETA Asia has offered to help transfer all the animals there to a sanctuary, where they would have trees to climb, grass to roll on, and many other animals to play with.

“As you surely know, the Pata Zoo has been called one of the saddest places in the world,” concludes Anderson. “By making the decision to close the zoo and send the animals to reputable sanctuaries with the help of my friends at PETA, you can end the growing controversy and show the world that animals deserve mercy.”

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