Source: Smithsonian Magazine 
August 14, 2012
"A real-life drama, tragically similar to the story line of the 1974 film Jaws and replete with sharks, a reluctant town mayor and hired fishermen, has erupted on a small island in the Indian Ocean.
Here, on the usually idyllic community of the French-owned Reunion Island, a 22-year-old surfer named Alexandre Rassica died after a shark bit his leg off in late July. Thierry Robert, mayor of the small Reunion beach town of St. Leu, answered by proposing that local fishermen cull the island’s shark population in spite of protections imposed in 2007, when area coral reefs were made part of a marine reserve. An immediate global outcry from shark advocates sent the mayor backpedaling, however, and he withdrew his proposal. The sharks remained protected, and begrudged surfers kept surfing.
Then, days later, another man was attacked—a 40-year-old who survived but lost a hand and a foot. About 300 outraged surfers gathered outside the St. Leu town hall, demanding an organized hunt. Two fatal shark attacks in 2011 along the island’s beaches already had the local wave-riders on edge, and this time Robert said he would open up the marine protected area to shark fishing."
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