Justice for Animals in Turkey

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    President of Turkey; Grand National Assembly of Turkey; Interior Minister of the Turkish Republic; Minister of Environment and Forests of the Turkish Republic; Minister of Education of the Turkish Republic; Turkish Representative of European Union
  • Sponsored By:
    members of Kedigen
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Recently the Animal Rights and Protection bill passed the Grand National Assembly of Turkey and received approval by the President of Turkey. Certainly this is a positive step for Turkey and her animals in need; however, there are obvious gaps in the bill requiring immediate improvements. For example the bill is stating some minimum fines and punishment; however it is not stating some other key laws and solutions, for example to be applied to a person in crime who is under the age of 18 (e.g., psychologic assessments and therapies and rehabilitation services for the child and his/her family). It should be noted that even the actual implementation date of this bill and hence the possibility of implementing the currently suggested solutions appear unclear at this stage.

The case below of horrible animal abuse is a true incident happened on June the 29th, 2004 in Kucukbakkalkoy, Istanbul.

A 13- 14-year-old boy threw fuel at a stray dog and burnt it in front of a silent neighborhood, watching the poor animals painful writhing. It was reported that stones were also thrown at the burning dog.

This incident was reported on the spot to the nearby animal shelter, Atasehir Barinagi (Shelter). Turkan Guler, a voluntary working in Atasehir Shelter, rushed for help but the dog died shortly upon its arrival at the Atasehir Shelter. A report by the municipalitys veterinary official on the dogs death is also available.

A group of three of an animal lovers platform (www.kedigen.com) visited the neighborhood to interview the locals, possible observers of the event and talked also to the neighborhoods municipal person. Finally a visit was conducted to the boys home and it was noted that this boy has been going through domestic violence and abuse by his family on an ongoing basis.

Two members of Kedigen web site have sued this boy and his family to show that this poor animal and all the other animals, which are entrusted to humankinds care, are not alone and also to show the amount and grade of domestic violence this 13-year-old boy has been experiencing, in order to ensure he will receive treatment and help to become a fellow citizen. With the current laws we have in Turkey we are not sure how much we may achieve with such legal actions but we know something has to be done on this matter for sure.

Any person with a common sense would be concerned about this 13-year-old childs future, the people in his environment, his future family and offsprings and the services he will give to his country and hence to the world, after his ability to commit such a horrible crime. Tragically there are many such cases happening in our country but unfortunately not looked after and prevented, producing future criminal adults.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

For the sake of our animals, nature and people, we urge you to integrate the necessary ameliorations (more powerful sanctions for everyone as well as for children and such childrens families and rehabilitation services for these people) into the current Turkish Animal Rights and Protection bill.

We also wish to see classes and especially recreational activities, where children can feel the joy of loving an animal, in Turkeys education system teaching our children from the earliest days the love for nature and animals and also giving the message that one must protect the weaker ones.