MOUNT KYAIKHTEEYOE, Myanmar: Under the shadow of Myanmar’s famed “Golden Rock” punters haggle for the latest traditional medicine cure — slices of skin from the country’s fast disappearing wild elephants sold for a few dollars a square inch. A set of stairs winds behind one of the Buddhist country’s most holy sites to a maze of shops openly selling everything from pieces of ivory and tiger’s teeth to vials of bear oil. But there is a new fad luring devotees of traditional medicine. “Elephant’s skin can cure skin diseases like eczema,” one shop owner, who requested anonymity, told AFP next to a counter brimming with porcupine quills and snake skins. “You burn pieces of skin by putting them in a clay pot. Then you get the ash and mix it with coconut oil to apply on the eczema.” He breaks off to talk to a potential buyer, who baulks at the price tag of 5,000 kyat ($3.65) per square inch (6.5 square centimetres) of elephant skin. Another young man touting his wares nearby promised a paste made from ground up elephant teeth would “cure pimples and remove black spots”. “Your face will be smooth and white after you use it,”… Read full this story
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