Activists welcome draft law on animal welfare

DUBAI — Prominent animal welfare groups have welcomed the decision of the UAE government to enact a law for the protection and welfare of animals.

By Joy Sengupta

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Published: Thu 5 Apr 2007, 8:54 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 1:36 AM

On the draft law, Jason Baker, a senior representative of People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) said: “PETA’s reaction is cautious optimism. Laws are important but are only useful if they are more than just words on paper. Animal welfare laws are a real sign of the development of a country. Of course the next step should be the enforcing of these laws in a proper way.”

Jackie Radcliff of the K9 Friends in Dubai said that the decision is a welcome first step towards the protection of animals in the UAE.

“In Dubai, the conditions are good. The government has helped us when we really needed it. This shows that the government here cares for the animals. There should be laws with regard to the prosecution of people who are cruel to animals,” she said.

According to the officials, the government needed to do more things in order to ensure that people followed the law strictly.

“The law means nothing if the penalties are meaningless or are not enforced. If animal cruelty is nothing more than a Dh10 penalty, then the law will be meaningless.”

“Another important fact should be to create awareness on the laws so that not only the general public but also the enforcers — including the police and the officials — are aware of the law and thus cannot claim ignorance as a defence,” they said.

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