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Espagne : le gouvernement adopte un projet de loi de protection animale

By February 18, 2022March 1st, 2022No Comments

Document type : Article published in Le Figaro

Author: Le Figaro with AFP

Preview: Spain's left-wing coalition government on Friday adopted a bill to combat the abuse, abandonment and killing of animals, and a revision to the penal code that will lay down penalties of up to two years imprisonment for certain offences.
Bullfighting, a very popular spectacle in Spain but one which is criticised by animal rights activists for the killing of animals involved,  is not affected by this text. The revised version, which must still be approved by parliament to come into force, responds to "an important societal demand", said the Spanish Minister of Social Rights, Ione Belarra, speaking at a press conference following the ministerial meeting.  She explained that the text was aimed at the "three major scourges" that affect animals in Spain, namely ill-treatment, abandonment and killing.
Fight against animal abandonment
The reform of the Penal Code that accompanies this bill makes provision for the introduction of penalties for ill-treatment of up to 18 months in prison if the animal's condition requires veterinary care and 24 months in the case of death, Ione Belarra said. The aim, she said, was to end the "impunity" currently enjoyed by those guilty of cruelty to animals. Ione Belarra, a member of the small radical left-wing party Podemos, the Socialists' coalition partner, also linked animal abuse to gender-based violence.
The fight against gender-based violence is a priority for Pedro Sánchez's government, and Spain leads Europe in this area. In particular, the minister asserted that certain men sometimes use animals as a lever "to cause even more suffering to the victims of gender-based violence" and indicated that this would henceforth be classed as "an aggravating circumstance". To combat animal abandonment, microchipping and vaccination will be made compulsory and only professional breeders will be allowed to operate.
Ione Belarra pointed out that 300,000 animals are abandoned every year in Spain, an average of more than 800 per day. Last, the new law will "ban the sacrifice of pets". She also said that the government wanted to "gradually transform zoos and dolphinariums into reinsertion centres for indigenous species". On 5 January, a new law granted the right to alternating custody - in the event of divorce or separation of owners - for pets, which are now legally considered "sentient living beings" and no longer mere "things". Several European countries have already amended their civil codes to recognise the living and sentient nature of animals.

From the Figaro website