Worldlog Week 24 – 2008

13 יוני 2008

This week the Party for the Animals scored an amazing victory. The Aggressive Animals Order, which allowed the confiscation and destruction of pit-bull type dogs, has been scrapped on the grounds that you cannot ban dogs simply on physical appearance.

The minister had to admit that the number of bite incidents had not dropped since the order was implemented and, therefore, that the order does not appear to be effective. The Party for the Animals has worked for a long time to have this discriminatory order abolished and we are of course thrilled with this result.

For Odin the repeal of this order came too late

This week, the Netherlands Court of Audit, an official organ that monitors Dutch government policy, published a damning report on the Dutch minister for agriculture, nature and food quality.

The minister is accused of doing too little to improve animal well-being and of neglecting to check if any progress is being made, according to the Netherlands Court of Audit. Inspections to verify that cattle breeders are working according to the rules are inadequate and there is no firm information on the number or seriousness of the offenses committed. Legislation to reduce the number of painful procedures inflicted on animals, such as the castration of piglets or the debeaking of chickens, has been delayed time and time again.

In the area of the environment, where the Netherlands Court of Audit looked at ammonia emitted by intensive cattle breeding, government policy failed the grade. Targets for 2010 will not be reached and, with the expansion of the milk quota, the amount of ammonia emitted is even set to rise. This will seriously damage nature reserves.

We will call the minister to account about this scathing assessment of her policy.

In Austria, 10 animal protectionists were arrested with brute force and detained without being indicted. They are still being held (4 weeks and counting) without knowing what they are charged with.

Although the Party for the Animals is in no position to judge what the animal protectionists involved are accused of, we are very concerned about the way the rights of these individuals have been violated. Amnesty International also finds the arrest and detention without charge unacceptable. Dr Martin Balluch, President of the Austrian Verein Gegen Tierfabrike (association against animal factories) has also been arrested and has gone on hunger strike. His condition is worsening rapidly. We submitted parliamentary questions on the situation to the Dutch minister of foreign affairs. You can find detailed information on the repressive methods of the Austrian justice system here.

You can sign an online petition and express your support for the arrested animal protectionists. Tomorrow the youth organization of the Party for the Animals, PINK, will be demonstrating outside the Austrian embassy in The Hague and demanding the release of Martin Balluch.

Dr. Martin Balluch

The parliamentary party is noticing that the last mile is the longest. Before the summer recess begins, we have a number of bills to discuss, we have to complete our parliamentary report (we are the only political party that produces such a report to give an account of our parliamentary work) and we are doing everything we can to prevent the establishment of multi-story mega pig sties in the Netherlands.

Until next week!