KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — A wildlife monitoring group says Asian countries are ignoring a ban on the cross-border trade of bear bile.

It blames rising demand on the folklore saying there are health benefits from ingesting the bile drained from live animals’ organs.

Anti-smuggling group TRAFFIC Southeast Asia says it found bear bile products in more than half of traditional medicine shops in mainland China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Burma and Vietnam during a recent survey. Some businesses in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand also sold bile.

The group said in a report Wednesday that many shops had a bear bile that originated from other countries, especially China.

The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species forbids bear bile trade between countries.

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