Party for the Animals Greece welcomes first elected representative!
The Greek Party for the Animals, one of over twenty political parties worldwide representing the ecological animal rights movement, has won its first municipal representative. A breakthrough in Greek political history, and a positive sign in the run-up to national elections coming up this spring. “It’s time for the political emancipation of animal advocacy. Animal politics is the new ecology!” says Nikos Raptis, co-founder of the Greek Party for the Animals or Komma Gia ta Zoa.
The Greek Party for the Animals’ representative, Maria Arvanitou, was elected municipal councillor of the major city of Thessaloniki in northern Greece in 2019, when she ran as a candidate for the leftist party SYRIZA. A long-time animal activist and member of local animal rights NGO’s, she has now left SYRIZA and joined the first and only eco-centric animal rights party of Greece. In this spring’s national elections, she will run as a candidate for national parliament on behalf of the Greek Party for the Animals – joining forces with a number of other ecologist and emancipation parties in the GREEN&PURPLE alliance.
With this, the Greek Party for the Animals is the eighth eco-centric animal rights party to be represented at local assemblies, along with her sister parties in the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany, Portugal, Australia, and the Netherlands. Altogether, the worldwide movement now has well over 200 representatives at national, regional and local levels, as well as a Member of European Parliament.
The Komma Gia ta Zoa was founded three years ago, and has been gaining momentum ever since. “None of the major crises we humans are confronted with – the climate, biodiversity and sustainability crises – can be solved if we do not fundamentally change the way we treat animals,” says Nikos Raptis, founder of the Greek Party for the Animals and author of a book on animal politics (Πολιτική Φιλοζωία, in Greek); “The interests of humans are the same as those of animals and nature. If we continue to treat animals the way we currently do, we force our children to fight for a livelihood and our grandchildren to fight for their lives.”