Fish, crabs and other shellfish were embedded in the ice as part of a special winter attraction, called “Freezing Port”.
A Japanese skating rink located in the southwestern city of Kitakyushu, closed down on Nov. 17 after an online campaign called the attraction, “immoral,” “cruel” and “disrespectful of life”. The skating rink had 5000 frozen fish and sea creatures embedded on the rink’s icy floor.
According to a Japanese newspaper, Space World wanted to give visitors to “have a sense of sliding on the sea”. Though the skating rink was widely popular amongst locals on its first day of opening, social media users didn’t take it as easy. Space World manager Toshimi Takeda told CNN Monday the reaction on social media had been brutal once news of the attraction was broadcast on local television.
“We were shocked to hear the reaction as the ice skate rink was very popular since it opened two weeks ago, we had an unprecedented number of visitors,” he said.
“(But) we had endless opinions about the project, we were shocked. We are sorry for the project and decided to close the rink on that night,” he added.
In the face of mounting criticism, officials said that the fish were already dead before they embedded them into the ice. “Misunderstanding spread on the Internet that the fish were frozen alive, but that was not the case. We should have explained more.”