bne IntelliNews – German MEP urges Albania to end ‘mass slaughter’ of street dogs
German MEP Martin Buschmann urged Albanian authorities to end “mass slaughter” of street dogs, raising issue of treatment of animals in the country as part of its quest for EU membership
Albania has been an EU candidate country since 2014, but has so far failed to start accession negotiations. The country’s progress doubles that of neighboring North Macedonia – which was held back by a bilateral dispute with Bulgaria – and several EU members from Western Europe also have their own issues with Albania, particularly regarding drugs and crime.
âAlbania is close to the start of negotiations with the EUâ¦ However, the legitimate question must be asked whether Albania even meets the criteria for membership. The country continues to struggle against an exhausting reform process, âthe MEP wrote in a long post on Facebook.
“As a candidate for membership, Albania must also follow EU animal welfare regulations.”
He highlighted the Tirana mayor’s order to resume mass sterilization, saying this was followed instead by “legal mass murder” of dogs. “The animals are captured and not sterilized in public institutions, but killed by injecting acid. Their dead bodies are then dumped in the municipal landfill. It must be assumed that thousands of street dogs have died. [in] in this cruel way in recent years, âBuschmann wrote.
“How will the prospects for the start of accession negotiations with Albania be influenced by the fact that Albania appears to lack minimum standards for animal welfare,” he wrote.
Animal Rescue Albania revealed earlier this year, in a video posted to social media, that street dogs were being given deadly injections in Tirana, which sparked a protest in the Albanian capital. CNA.al media estimated that around 10,000 stray dogs may have been killed in the Albanian capital in recent years.
After Buschmann’s call, Animal Rescue Albania released a new statement saying that municipalities in other Albanian cities are also killing stray dogs by poisoning or shooting them.
âIn the capital, Tirana, municipal workers take dogs from the streets under the pretext of ‘sterilization’ and kill them, as shown in the hidden camera video. They put the bodies of the killed dogs in black plastic bags and eventually dumped them in Sharra’s landfill, âhe wrote. âThe municipality of Pogradec keeps the dogs tied and lets them starve without food or water until they die. It happens every day.