A 32-year-old Chinese man has become famous after completing a journey from Western Europe to China on horseback.
Xu Zhixian, from Heze in eastern China’s Shandong province, was recently arrested by Dutch police after they received a complaint that Xu had abused his horse, Toutiao News reported.
On February 20, Xu began a scheduled journey riding his 8-year-old purebred Arabian white stallion, Huihui, from Spain to Central China.
With a travel speed of about 30 kilometers per day, he has so far traveled through Spain, France and Belgium. Late last month, Xu and Huihui arrived in the Netherlands after traveling more than 2,500 kilometers.
In a video that Xu posted on social media earlier this week, local police in the Netherlands arrested Xu and detained Huihui. However, after only 2 days, they released him because they could not find evidence to support the abuse allegations.
Xu then continued his journey, however, two days later, the police questioned him again, this time accompanied by a veterinarian. After checking, the doctor declared the horse was injured before Xu bought it.
“I was told that based on the animal welfare group’s policy, my horse doesn’t like such a long trip,” Xu said.
The Chinese man with no other guests had to follow the instructions of the police. He will stay in the Netherlands for 3 more weeks and wait until the police and veterinarians review.
“I might be looking for a ranch for the horse. We will end this trip if he doesn’t feel well,” Xu said.
A video news report about Xu and Huihui received 5.14 million views and 6,019 comments as of September 22. Many netizens agreed with Dutch police that Xu abused the horse. . However, there are also many opinions defending him. Comments that received a lot of likes wrote:
– Is the horse exhausted? He sacrificed his horse just for internet fame!
– Would it be better for him to walk or ride a bicycle? On a horse? I see clearly that he is abusing it
– Is riding a horse considered cruelty to animals? What about the equestrian competitions at the Olympic Games?
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