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Toothless EU succumbs to Malta’s continued procrastination

The following reports, in immediate proximity to one another in the Times of Malta on 19 September 2006, beggar belief. While Malta continues to procrastinate about spring hunting derogations and the EU Commission gives them a breathing space, hunters slaughter birds of prey and other migrants and describe police controls and enforcement as harassment.

HUNTERS SHOOT BIRDS ILLEGALLY WHILE COMPLAINING OF HARASSMENT

EU GIVES IN TO MALTESE PROCRASTINATION


This must stop now and the EU must take a much harder line. Write to Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas and tell him this:

MAIL TO STAVROS DIMAS




To: stavros.dimas@cec.eu.int



cc.: parlsec.opm@gov.mt



bcc.: info@proact-campaigns.net, info@birdlifemalta.org


Subject: THE BIRD SLAUGHTER MUST STOP - NOW!

To:
EU Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas

cc. Prime Minister of Malta - Secretariat





Dear Commissioner Dimas,

The contents of two articles* published in the Times of Malta on the same day, 19 September 2006, call the effectiveness of the European Commission in respect of implementation of the bird protection guidelines completely into question.

In the first it states that Maltese hunters, whilst complaining that they were being "harassed by the police" , illegally shot at and injured or killed migrating birds of prey such as honey buzzards, marsh harriers, kestrels as well as herons, spoonbills, bee-eaters, hoopoes and smaller birds such as swallows and even sparrows.

The second article states that having concluded earlier this year that Malta was not justified in using the derogation for spring hunting of Quail and Turtle Doves and was consequently in breach of EU law, you have nonetheless granted Malta a further two months within which to answer a European Commission warning on spring hunting after it missed a September 4 deadline.

The first sad story is not new to nature lovers, conservationists and tourists to Malta, who have repeatedly commented on, and communicated with your department, on this continuing illegal and unnecessary carnage. It must now be clear to the commission that the Maltese government will continue to deploy such delaying tactics in order to postpone the inevitable - a ban on spring hunting and strict and effective controls on hunting at other times - for as long as possible.

For as long as this situation continues, you, the Commission, are just as much to blame for the death or injury to the hundreds if not thousands of birds which continue to be shot illegally. I/we therefore demand that swift action is taken to compel Malta to effectively enforce the bird protection guidelines and to make it clear that the derogation will, with immediate effect, no longer be considered justifiable.

Trusting that you will give this matter a much higher degree of priority than in the past, I/we remain.



Yours faithfully,


(Please add name and address here)







References:

Illegal bird shooting: http://www.timesofmalta.com/core/article.php?id=237424

EU permits delay: http://www.timesofmalta.com/core/print_article.php?id=237353




Last updated on:

Proact 2003