06.07.04. Bojkot Olimpijade u Ateni

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Dok životinje Grčke trče trku za svoje živote, Prijatelji životinja pozivaju sve građane Hrvatske na bojkot Olimpijade u Ateni zbog trovanja pasa

Western Daily Press, 20. travnja 2004., Roger Tavener: 'Atenski skandal! Još jedan pas leži otrovan uslijed onoga što svijet sada promatra kao tragediju grčkih Olimpijskih igara.'

Udruga Prijatelji životinja pridružuje se udrugama za dobrobit životinja iz čitavoga svijeta u njihovom bojkotu Olimpijskih igara u Ateni.

Bojkot je, između ostalih, pokrenula Marijo Anne Gillis, osnivačica lobističke grupe WAG-New York, Inc. (Welfare for Animals in Greece), nakon što je čitav svijet ostao zgranut informacijama o 3.000 pobijenih i otrovanih pasa i mačaka koje su atenske vlasti na najokrutniji način uklonile sa svojih ulica, a sve u cilju 'ušminkavanja' grada u utrci s pripremama za Olimpijske igre 2004.

Trovanje pasa lutalica, ali i onih pasa koji su imali svoje vlasnike, i mačaka postao je način života u Grčkoj i pretvorio se u svakodnevnu pojavu. Odgovorni za postavljanje otrovanih mamaca (a sumnja se na lokalnu vladu i općinske uprave da su za to izdali nalog), rijetko su bili uhvaćeni na djelu. Tijela nedužnih žrtava kupili su smetlari u ranim jutarnjim satima i bacali ih kao smeće, a neke od životinja još uvijek su bile žive i uvijale se od bola.

Western Daily Press, 20. travnja 2004. Roger Tavener: 'Mrtvi psi leže posvuda u Ateni i okolnim predgrađima. Svjedoci čak tvrde da su vidjeli kako u nekim grčkim gradovima skupljaju i bacaju u kamione žive pse, koje više nitko nikada nije vidio.'

Trovanju se pribjeglo kao nužnoj i jeftinoj operaciji čišćenja velikog broja pasa i mačaka lutalica, koje se smatralo štetočinama i uličnim štakorima. Životinje se trovalo strihininom i otrovom za štakore, pesticidima i herbicidima koji su se koristili na farmama, ili ih se ubijalo komadićima zdrobljenog stakla koji su ostavljani u sirovom mesu. Druge su pak životinje bile obješene za vrat, upucane ili pregažene automobilom i ostavljene da umru na cesti.

Dok su aktivisti pokrenuli masovnu kampanju evakuacije, transportirajući lutalice avionima, vlakovima, kamionima i autobusima u njihove nove domove diljem Europe, branitelji životinja od Australije do Amerike pojačali su svoje pozive za bojkot igara.

Udruga Prijatelji životinja nije mogla ostati pasivna pred ovakvom okrutnošću te stoga poziva građane Republike Hrvatske da se pridruže svjetskom bojkotu Olimpijskih igara u Grčkoj, grčkog turizma i industrije.

Više o tragediji grčkih pasa i mačaka koja je započela još daleke 2001. godine na:
www.looking-glass.co.uk/news/library2004/2004-6-greek-strays1.htm.

Prosvjedno pismo

EMBASSY OF GREECE IN ZAGREB
H. E. Mr. Dimitris Vidouris, Ambassador
Opatička 12
10000 Zagreb

August 12, 2004

Your Excellency,

Animal Friends Croatia's leadership and its 1,300 members are shocked and horrified by the reports, pictures and the video footage of about eighty percent of the abandoned dogs and cats of Athens and the Greater Attika that have been 'disposed of' in a cruel and systematic manner.

Roughly 80% of the 30,000 to 50,000 abandoned dogs in Athens are already dead - victims of deliberate poisoning, abuse and neglect - as government officials, subcontracted welfare agencies, and the 2004 Athens Organizing Committee neaten the streets for a sleek world reception. Carcasses tossed into trashcans belie the government's denial. Images of animals rotting alive in shelters linger, despite the unveiling of a 'showcase shelter' to greet the press.

While elected officials overlook anti-cruelty laws and assume no responsibility for the country's vanishing dogs, Greek and international media outlets continue to expose heartbreaking portraits. Witnesses describe the routine roundup of dead and dying animals in garbage trucks. Starving dogs and cats, often baited with strychnine-laced meat known as fola ('poison balls'), foam at the mouth, convulse and suffer unbearably before they die.

On August 4, 22 poisoned dogs were found close to the Port of Piraeus, the gateway to Athens. Eighty more dead dogs were allegedly discovered in Saronida, also near Athens. We understand Athens maintains just one municipal shelter, along with several privately owned, rundown facilities. Although the Deputy Mayor of Athens, Tonia Kanellopoulou, announced plans to gather, sterilize and re-home the city's strays, just one municipality appears to have implemented the new law.

Greece's unprecedented inhumanity towards dogs, cats and livestock has become a national shame and there is absolutely no excuse to justify the reality of thousands of animals' tortured destruction for cosmetic reasons.

As the world now focuses its lens on Athens, Greece's desperate attempts to conceal this slaughter which happened because of the Olympic Games must not stand unchallenged. For, Greece knew years ago that Olympics 2004 will eventually happen and Greece/Athens knew that it had a strays issue in the streets of Athens. Therefore, Greece and Athens had lots of time to solve the problem of strays in a more humane and dignified way than they did.

In this regard, we kindly urge you to intercede with the Greek government for the welfare of animals in your country. We will continue to encourage everyone we know to join us in a boycott of Greek travel and commerce - until visible strides are made to enforce existing animal welfare laws and institute humane reforms.

We demand an immediate halt to abuse, neglect and the mass poisoning of Greek dogs throughout the Olympic venues and beyond, and we hope the negative publicity serves as a wake-up call for Greece to raise its standard of animal welfare with modern shelters that maintain veterinary supervision, mandatory spay/neuter/vaccination, microchip identification, and responsible policies for re-homing animals.

Respectfully yours,

Luka Oman
President
Animal Friends Croatia

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