Government plans animal welfare Police force
The government will create an animal police force tasked with investigating abuse, Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou said on Monday.
Nicolaou said a government bill provides for the operation of an animal police force operating island-wide with members specially trained as regards animal protection, the minister said.
“The main office will be located at the police HQ and officers will be assigned in every district to handle such cases,” Nicolaou said.
The animal police will work together with the 79 community officers who will also receive special training.
“Together with the police stations they will operate as a network investigating such cases.”
Nicolaou said the state wanted to create an institution that would respond effectively to the society’s demand for animal protection and punishment of the people who abused them.
“It is high time that such mentality, which has been expressed through various ways at times, ceases through the presence of the police and effective prosecution.”
The minister voiced his conviction that the tolerance displayed to date would stop.
The police have prepared an action plan relating to prevention, immediate response and intervention, and investigation of animal abuse.
“It includes guidelines to the members of the force on investigating cases and the potential of co-operating with other authorities,” Nicolaou said. “This plan will be put in place immediately.”
The minister said the bill on the animal police force was handed to animal rights organisations who will submit their views within three weeks. It will then go to the Legal Service for processing before being submitted to parliament.
Source : Cyprus Mail