It looks as though the French have started queuing up behind Gerard Depardieu, in a desperate attempt to gain a Russian passport. Well, one of them has, anyway. Brigitte Bardot has also threatened to ask Russia if she can become one of their own, but not because of tax hikes, this time. Bardot’s problem isn’t a financial one at all; rather, a case of animal welfare. The screen legend has threatened to give up her French citizenship unless a decision to put down circus elephants suspected of carrying turberculosis is overturned, Reuters reports.

The elephants, named Nepal and Baby, are owned by a circus and a court in Lyon ordered for them to be put down as a precautionary measure. Bardot has become renowned for her work in animal rights campaigning and she said in a statement “If those in power are cowardly and impudent enough to kill the elephants... then I have decided I will ask for Russian nationality to get out of this country which has become nothing more than an animal cemetery.” The circus owners, Cirque Pinder also said today (January 4, 2013) that they will fight the decision to end the animals’ lives. The animals tested positive for TB in 2010 but have ben kept in a zoo in Lyon, away from the general public.

Gerard Depardieu is reported to be accepting the offer of a Russian passport from the Russian leader Vladimir Putin. He is denouncing his home country of France after their plans to impose a 75% tax on its wealthiest citizens.