28 Dec '11, 12pm

Nepal town hosts elephant race, soccer match

Nepal town hosts elephant race, soccer match

Mahouts and their elephants run after a ball during a soccer match on the final day of the Elephant Race event at Sauraha in Chitwan, about 170 km south of Kathmandu Dec 28, 2011. -- PHOTO: REUTERS CHITWAN, Nepal (AP) - Elephants have raced, played soccer and shown their beauty at a festival to raise conservation awareness and lure foreign tourists to Nepal. Teams of four elephants played soccer using a standard-size ball as thousands of locals and foreign tourists cheered on the sidelines. Twenty elephants raced on 300m track, and trainers of some animals painted white patterns on the elephant's bodies and their nails red. The three-day event that ended on Wednesday was aimed at attracting visitors to the Chitwan conservation forests some 170km south of the capital, Katmandu. Nepal is slowly recovering from the 10-year Maoist insurgency that killed more than 13,000 people...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Asia/Story/STISt...

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