World Stray Animals Day in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Dalida Kozlic L.L.B writes:

Something very personal….

It is estimated that there are about 600 million stray animals in the world. Every year the 4th of April is marked as “World Stray Animals Day”.

Stray animals are the ones that live on the streets without having an owner, or that have lived their lives without being domesticated. Stray animals usually feed on any rubbish that is left outside, which is why you find them close to populated areas. Some of the animals, although living wild on the streets, are fed by people. This is why they are sometimes known as “community animals”.

Many hundreds of thousands of animals worldwide have been poisoned, clubbed to death, euthanized or killed in other ways to solve the stray dog problem. But all these barbaric methods only lead to a short term decrease in the population density (the World Health Organisation
and the WSPA released a report stating the
most effective method is a combination of:
sterilisation, education on responsible dog ownership, and registration – identification of both animal and owner).

Bosnia and Herzegovina is famous by its barbaric methods of killing of stray animals despite the fact that the Bosnian Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is one of the best laws in Europe and torturing and killing animals is a criminal offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The 4th April, the World Stray Animals Day, was a sad day for all rescuers, so too are all days in the year.

All of you who have read my articles know them to be realistic and factual reports of a lawyer about the situation for stray animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. My intention has always been to present you with facts as well as the legal background of happenings here and the concrete actions which can be done to help Bosnian animals.

When I started writing about the World Stray Animals Day and events in Bosnia, I wanted to present another realistic picture with all the needed facts, but there were some things that I cannot get out of my mind…

Being a rescuer in Bosnia is tough work. I have written many articles about this such as “The Silence of dogs” and “When activists do the work of the authorities”.

I often read the posts of my colleagues. I read about the animals they have saved and sometimes when we have time, we sit and talk about everything that is going on. I have noticed that none of us talks about the future, we all talk about the past or the present. We see no future.

This text isn’t about us, this text is about stray animals and the need to emphasise their suffering as well as the suffering of all animals every day, not only on days when there is some “special” (usually sad) occasion.

I am writing this because dark shadows of a dirty media campaign against stray dogs are appearing here again. General elections should be held in October 2018 and a few big scandals have happened in the past few months. Politicians need some subject to occupy the minds of primitive people and to spread fear.

They have been talking about a new war a lot recently, but obviously people don’t buy this spin anymore and after hearing and reading stories about a new war and political scandals, arrests and published articles about criminality of politicians, I have noticed headlines about “dangerous stray animals” again.

Dogs are a channel for the anger that people should feel towards those who are responsible for the way we live today. Dogs have become public enemy number one and the lightning rod for a society which suffers from all kinds of problems. If this society thinks about how to kill as many dogs as possible rather than how people can make a living, here the problem starts. We are a psychopathic society which suffers from mass aggression and a society that has misdirected its aggression.

The authorities don’t want to give up on making the situation worse for stray animals, but the rescuers won’t give up our fight to save them.

Animals suffer in silence and making the difference is the biggest thing we can do. Making a difference means being their voice. We must be their voice as well as their saviours.

Saving one life makes a difference; every saved life is worthwhile and important. Being the voice of animals is something that can change things for all animals, and that can end this nightmare once and for all.

Only by full implementation of the Act on the Protection and Welfare of Animals, will misuse and illegal killing in shelters and by hygienic services be prevented.

At this moment, animals are being caught and killed by dog catchers, hunters, psychopaths, utility workers and many other awful people who are ready to do everything for money here.

At this moment, only social networks are presenting the facts about massacres in Bosnia.

At this moment, only rescuers take care of stray animals thanks to help of good people.

At this moment, we are left on our own to fight against corrupt authorities.

At this moment, animals of Bosnia have you and us.

We need to change this, we must draw the attention of international media, organisations and embassies. “In Memory of Vucko” is the biggest online database of Bosnian horrors that can help all of us to find a way to influential organisations and politicians. If we had achieved this in 2009 when the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals was enacted, we could achieve this now too.

As an experienced rescuer and lawyer who knows our situation deeply, I am frightened to admit I feel in the next period of time we will face a new aggressive campaign which means even more dog catchers and killers.

I wish I were wrong, but I have seen the worst in my work, I have seen things that I do not have strength to mention…  

If you want to support Dalida in her work, what she needs most is support to keep her rescues safe so she can not worry about fundraising and focus on her legal work fighting for the rights of strays of Bosnia. You can send money via Paypal to: eldar.kozlic1@gmail.com and you can join her Facebook group

Please read related articles/blogs on this site for more information:

Unimaginable cases of torture and killing of stray animals in Bosnia
New Risk of the Law Changing: the Strays of Bosnia Will Suffer!
Mass poisoning of stray dogs in Zenica, Bosnia
Hunters Killing Dogs Again
Seven Years of Lobbying for National Pet Register in Bosnia Comes to Fruition
Dogs Have Become Public Enemy Number One
Money laundering behind killing of stray dogs in Sarajevo
Evidence of crimes against dogs ignored 
Illegal Catching and Killing of Dogs in Sarajevo
Terror for strays on the streets of Sarajevo
Monstrous Killing and Injuring of Stray Dogs in Zenica, Bosnia!
The responsibility of an animal rescuer

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Unimaginable cases of torture and killing of stray animals in Bosnia

WARNING! VERY GRAPHIC CONTENT

Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

Increasing hatred towards stray animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina can be shown by the latest cases of vicious torturing and killing of stray animals. Rescuers and animal advocates in different towns and cities of the country are facing an endemic of cruelty towards animals that is getting worse.

Sometimes the most dreadful crimes happen in ordinary places, and it seems that it is becoming a practice in Bosnia. Rescuers in the capital city Sarajevo are right now trying to deal with a brutal and horrific situation. In the past few days, many dogs have been poisoned by an unknown person or persons, mainly in a notorious part of Novi Grad municipality, Dobrinja.

Poisoned dogs are being found in isolated areas as well as on the streets of Dobrinja and other parts of Sarajevo. Traces of poison for mice and snails have been found on the streets and this implies that this is a well prepared and organised criminal offence that is probably committed by a group of people. The poison is highly toxic and animals die within few hours, while veterinarians are trying to find a solution to help animals that are in agony.

Most of the poisoned stray dogs have died, as have a few pets that ate poison hidden in meat. Also, rescuers have found bodies of poisoned cats which is unusual given that cats are cautious animals. They have probably eaten poisoned meat.

The latest case happened in Sarajevo area called Aneks, where one dog was poisoned this morning.

Citizens as well as rescuers are very upset, particularly because the police and the inspection are still silent.

Please see the news report on Radio Sarajevo “Dobrinja / Građani uznemireni: Brojni ulični psi otrovani u Sarajevo” (“Citizens upset: Many street dogs poisoned in Sarajevo”)

Unfortunately, the cruelty of people doesn’t end in Sarajevo.

Hunters in the municipality of Kneževo near Banja Luka killed dozens of stray dogs as well as pets a few days ago. Bodies of shot, abused and killed dogs were found in the forests near Kneževo four days ago. Wounds from gunshot could be seen on the corpses.

Hunters are notorious and illegal executors of stray animals in Bosnia, and this blog has documented a number of killings of dogs by hunters.

Many hunting organisations ignore the law and still kill stray dogs in villages as well as rural areas in Bosnia even when those dogs are not causing harm to wild animals, and despite the fact that hunters are criminally responsible for such actions.

News article on Prnjavorski.net:  “Lovci pobili pse lutalice” (“Hunters kill stray dogs”)

And, rescuers are once more facing an awful new case of torturing of animals in Zenica.

One of the most brutal cases of killing of an animal that I have ever seen as a lawyer and a rescuer has happened in this town. Rescuers of SAPA Zenica found the body of a stray dog few days ago. The brutality of this crime is appalling. The dog was beaten and all her paws were cut off.

Such brutality is extremely worrying and it is devastating to see what someone can do to an animal that cannot defend herself.

I am not good at expressing emotions but as I am writing a new post for this blog I feel that I must express how I feel about these recent atrocities in Bosnia. I believe that every rescuer not only in Bosnia feels the same.
When I was a child, there was a war here in Bosnia. All of us learnt that death was something that could be seen every minute of our lives. I remember how my parents were taking animals to the basement of the house where they placed during the war. After the war, we hoped that it would be better for people as well as for animals. We were wrong.

Why am I mentioning the war? It was a period when everyone including me “met” death for the first time, but it wasn’t an “ordinary” death, it was a death that was a consequence of horrific and cruel events and torture. Some people say that Bosnia is a cursed country, that the land is full of blood and the cruel character of Balkan people will never change.

This sounds like a horror movie, but despite this I am afraid that it is a true. I am the person who only talks about facts, and the fact is that I am writing an article about three cases on unimaginable torture of stray animals in Bosnia. I am writing about animals that are victims of vicious persons, psychopaths with a cruel character in the country where killing someone “is a normal” and where no one pays attention to the suffering of those who can’t defend themselves.

A friend of mine, who was in army during the war, has told me: “You can’t face death almost every day and expect to be the same person as you used to be once.”

He is right.

Rescuers face death almost every day. We face the most notorious consequences of cruel minds and we face suffering every day. The worst thing is that we live in the country where decades are needed to change this situation. We aren’t the same persons as we used to be. We talk and think about the horrors and atrocities and we bear our responsibility to help so many animals. They only have us and no one else. Authorities who ought to protect them, actually kill them and chase us. We live in the country where logic “ends”, but still we don’t give up. We mustn’t give up.

******

RELATED POSTS:

Mass poisoning of stray dogs in Zenica, Bosnia
Poisoning of dogs ordered in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia
Monstrous Killing and Injuring of Stray Dogs in Zenica, Bosnia!
Dogs found slaughtered outside Shelter in Sarajevo
Puppy Flung off Bridge in Sarajevo, Bosnia
Puppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina
Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED WITH WIRE IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS
Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues and to help us keep safe the rescued dogs we are sponsoring but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org as a ‘gift’. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

New Risk of the Law Changing: the Strays of Bosnia Will Suffer!

Screen Shot 2015-04-05 at 18.58.49Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

The Bosnian War was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995. Casualties were not only people. Animals also were casualties and suffered during the war. Bosnia and Herzegovina did not have an Animal Protection and Welfare Act until 2009. The Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina was only legislated and entered into force by Parliamentary Assembly in 2009. Cruelty towards and killing animals is a criminal offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

This Law regulates the responsibility of humans regarding the protection and welfare of animals in terms of breeding/owning; providing shelter and food; protection from cruelty; the well-being of animals during authorised slaughter, ensuring animals are not exposed to stress during transportation, wildlife protection, treatment of abandoned animals, pets and laboratory animals, establishing ethics committees and expert councils/boards, as well as conducting the supervision of the implementation of this Law and penalty measures for all violators of this Law.

The government of Canton Sarajevo has sent an official request to Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina to enact amendments to the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. The prime minister and ministers in the government of Canton Sarajevo demand that article 14 (euthanasia) of the Act is changed. This article allows euthanasia of stray animals only because of veterinary reasons. It is prohibited to kill stray dogs in shelters. Amendments to this article would allow authorities to kill healthy stray animals in shelters if the animals are not adopted.

CULLtureThe proposal of this amendment is not in legislation procedure yet, but we are expecting that one of the leading national parties, the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) will accept this request and start legal procedure to enact these “KILL” amendments. Dino Konakovic, the prime minister of Canton Sarajevo, is a member of the SDA.

As you all know, we had a similar situation in 2013, when rescuers and animal welfare advocates managed to stop the legal procedure to enact a “KILL LAW.” We need your support again.

The Bosnian Act on the Protection and Welfare of Animals is one of the best in Europe but no one is interested in this: corrupt authorities are often involved in the illegal killing of stray and wild animals as a way of money laundering.

Stray animals are victims of notorious cruelty. Politically eligible persons construct so-called shelters for stray animals. These shelters are no better than concentration camps, and the authorities invoice for spay/neuter programs that they do not undertake, as well as invoicing for for food is never given to the animals. They invoice for veterinary examinations and treatment, and at the end, for means for euthanasia. In reality, the stray animals are tortured, and killed in worst possible ways. All this represents a series of violations of criminal law as well as the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

While these atrocities are occurring, local authorities are also financing people who own these shelters. It is money laundering. Also many stray animals are abused and killed on the streets.  Authorities do not nothing to find and punish animal abusers.

10892019_955233547821769_7086032730255842381_nThese proposed amendments, allowing the euthanasia of healthy stray animals, has as their purpose a means to conceal the massacre of stray animals that is already occurring.

Should these amendments be in Parliamentary legislation procedure it will be critical to apply pressure to stop the amendments. International focus and support would be the only solution. International animal welfare organisations, embassies, media, as well as individuals will have to press BiH authorities, insisting they do not change the law, but rather to implement it. The authorities must seek out legal and humane ways to solve the problem of over population of stray dogs in BiH.

The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs is a direct consequence of the failure to implement, as well as a series of obstructions and misuse of the Act on the Protection and Welfare of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which has been lasting since 2009 when the law came into force. The Act on Protection Act and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a lex specialis (the main legislation) in the field of treating animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act, as well as related by-laws, are the main legal framework for all other laws and by-laws that are legislated by the legislative authorities at any level of organization of authority in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which regulate the relation, keeping and treatment of animals.

By attempting only a partial and non-systematic implementation of the Act, the agony of stray dogs on the streets as well as citizens will only widen further, and budget funds will be spent on non-purpose, illegal and unsystematic attempts to solve the problem. Instead of solving the problem with legal solutions, authorities have been financing the killing of stray animals in illegal pounds for years. Financing of illegal pounds is a violation of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, as well as a serious offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

P1020736Failure to implement the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is the result of a series of abuses and obstructions as well as of the authorities dealing only with consequences and not with the causes of the problem, and the causes are the abandonment of animals, irresponsible ownership and uncontrolled reproduction.

Increased numbers of dogs on the streets is always and only a direct result of irresponsible ownership, and failure to implement preventive measures that are provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, such as punishing those who abandon animals, the full identification of ownership and pets, spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and education and information campaigns which are aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem.

The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals very clearly and precisely provides solutions for dealing with an overpopulation of stray animals in Bosnia. The first legal obligation of authorities is to build shelters for stray animals, whose purpose is to care for stray animals until they are adopted. Conditions that all shelters must fulfil are provided by the Ordinance on the establishment and the conditions that must be fulfilled by shelters for stray animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Another legal obligation of the authorities is the registration of ownership of animals.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-28Finally, after seven years the State Veterinary Office enacted the laws on registration, micro-chipping and identification of ownership of animals Bosnia and Herzegovina, but it has not yet established a unified register of ownership of animals.

If the registry of tagged animals and owners of animals is established, it will enable the identification, prosecution and punishment of people who abandon animals. The implementation of repressive measures will directly affect the consciousness of citizens and thus help solve the situation. Because of the absence of a register of breeders, illegal breeding causes an increasing of number of stray animals. Irresponsible or unregistered breeders and breeding contributes to increasing the number of stray animals.

Although it is their legal obligation, municipalities and cities refuse to finance the construction and maintenance of adequate shelters for stray animals, but rescuers and concerned citizens witness everyday improper and illegal spending of budget funds. Also false information about the cost of maintaining shelters is published. If violators of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals are punished, the funds raised from fines ought to be directed towards the construction and maintenance of shelters for stray animals. Also implementation of the Act of Protection and Welfare of Animals can be financed by funds collected from legally obligatory vaccination of dogs against rabies. Until shelters for stray animals are built, municipalities should finance the feeding of stray animals, and authorities are obliged to implement spay/neuter projects.

14225350_1114575611942665_3682593145194114853_nIf the shelters for stray animals, which must be “centres for care and adopting of stray animals,” are built and maintained in accordance with state regulations and law, and if there is an appropriate policy for establishing and managing shelters, the cost will be low. Quality education and raising awareness of the citizens will mean an increase in the percentage of adoption of abandoned animals.

Hygienic services are directly related to the existence of shelters for stray animals and because of this, the establishment of hygienic services cannot be an independent measure regarding decreasing the population of stray animals. Hygienic services must be established in accordance with the provisions of the laws on the establishment and the conditions that hygienic services must fulfil in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The purpose of a hygienic service is capturing and transport of stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters. Certainly the establishment of a legal  hygienic services is necessary, but hygienic services cannot exist and work without implementing all the other legal obligations of the authorities, especially without building shelters. If hygienic services work without implementing all the provisions and measures provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, those services do not solve the problem and they are perfect grounds for different abuses and misuses of the laws.

22Only by full implementation of the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals, will misuse and illegal killing in shelters and by hygienic services be prevented. Also, all responsible authorities such as the Veterinary Office, Veterinary inspection, authorised official veterinarians, police, etc., must be involved in the implementation of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, and it is their legal obligation. Authorities in Bosnia have failed to fulfil their legal obligations and many authorities that are responsible for implementation of the Act have actually violated the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. Such illegal behaviour must be punished and prevented.

Prevention of abuse, which is particularly related to the fact that stray dogs can “disappear”,  is only possible by consistent implementation of all the measures stipulated by the Act on the protection and welfare of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

You should be aware that the partial and manipulating misuse of Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, which has been in practice so far, only makes for an even greater and longer-lasting problem. The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs can be solved by the registration of ownership of dogs, engaging a certified trainer for the protection of animals to educate people, assistance in developing of a strategy to solve the problem of stray animals and finally the building self-sustaining shelters for stray animals.

Without complete and consistently implementing of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, the problem of overpopulation of stray animals will not be solved. It is important to end the illegal practice of partial implementation of the law which is a criminal offence and which causes the problem to become even more complicated and difficult to resolve.

Screen Shot 2016-05-17 at 18.09.08

Please join Dalida’s Facebook group and AWABosnia Facebook group.

Related posts:
Dogs Have Become Public Enemy Number One
When Bosnian Activists do the Work of the Authorities
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life
Dog Shelters in Bosnia: A Complex Situation
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
Horror Camps for Animals in Bosnia
ANTI KILL-LAW FIGHT CONTINUES
KILL-LAW DEBATE IN BOSNIA
BOSNIA ABOUT TO IMPLEMENT KILL LAW!
THE HORROR SHELTERS OF BOSNIA – SOMETHING MUST BE DONE!
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!
Concentration Camp for Man’s Best Friend

 

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Mass poisoning of stray dogs in Zenica, Bosnia

16114270_1190725531022637_6877927546708079613_nDalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

Once again an awful crime against stray dogs is being committed in Zenica.

As reported widely on online media portals, an unknown offender has poisoned a large number of stray dogs in the last few days, actively violating the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the worst possible way.

16265802_1190720224356501_4475743961179128105_nThe law unequivocally prohibits indiscriminate killing of abandoned animals and prescribes punishment for abandoning and torturing abandoned animals. The Criminal Code of Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, specifically Article 318, defines torture and killing of animals as a criminal offense that carries a prison sentence of up to one year.

Citizens of Zenica as well as volunteers of the SAPA Zenica animal welfare organisation have found bodies of dead dogs in many parts of the town including on the streets in the city centre, in the doorways of buildings, in the city parks.

This crime has been reported to the local police as well as to the Prosecutor’s Office of Zenica – Doboj Canton.

Volunteers of SAPA have documented this situation, they have seen dogs dying in agony. Right now no one knows what poison is being used nor well who the offender(s) are.

16387260_1190725994355924_4219833290646125777_nSAPA Zenica are joined by people in the city who feed and love stray animals in their attempts to find out more regarding the possible offender(s) as well to save poisoned dogs who are still surviving.

Is it just a coincidence that this awful crime began after the Mayor of Zenica ordered stray dogs in Zenica to be caught?

This order is illegal in a number of ways:

The Zenica shelter for stray dogs has a capacity of 70 dogs, and yet a mass catching of stray dogs has begun. By law the shelters have to provide adequate and humane treatment of animals. Also, the hygienic services company engaged to catch these dogs does not fulfil conditions that are provided by the BiH Ordinance (laws) on the establishment of such companies and how they must conduct their service.

16388349_1190722191022971_6647876357361284454_nAccording to provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals every municipality is obliged to establish and finance shelters for stray animals as well as hygienic services that to catch and transport stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters.

Two very important ordinances were legislated in 2010: Ordinances on establishing and conditions that shelters for stray animals and hygienic services must fulfil. Both ordinances provide very strict and humane ways of establishing and maintaining of shelters and hygienic services. Bosnia and Herzegovina has one of the best animal welfare legislations in Europe, but the reality is different and the outcome cruel for stray animals.

This decision of the mayor of Zenica is illegal because the shelter has a capacity of 70 places and therefore there cannot be any action of mass catching of stray dogs. Also, registered and trained dog catchers can catch dogs, not ordinary workers of some company.

Video: WARNING VERY UPSETTING MATERIAL

For updates and to show your support, please go to SAPA Zenica’s Facebook Page. This organisation does incredible work and they are in desperate need of funds to continue saving the dogs of Zenica.

If you want to help with vet costs for the dogs who are in vet care, SAPA Zenica Paypal is sapazenica09@yahoo.com and please mark that it is for ‘surviving dogs of the poisonings’.

16299201_1190726974355826_8118525663338659626_n

SAPA Zenica was established in July 2009, as a local non-profit, non-governmental organization by a core group of volunteers and enthusiasts in the city of Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina. SAPA’s mission is, through the respect and caring for animals, to protect their rights and ultimately eliminate all forms of cruelty and exploitation of animals. SAPA’s vision is a society in which humans live in harmony with animals, respecting them and their needs.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

RELATED POSTS:
Article on AVAZ: Šokantni prizori na ulicama Zenice: Nastavljeno masovno trovanje pasa lutalica (FOTO/VIDEO) 

Poisoning of dogs ordered in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia
Monstrous Killing and Injuring of Stray Dogs in Zenica, Bosnia!
Dogs found slaughtered outside Shelter in Sarajevo
Puppy Flung off Bridge in Sarajevo, Bosnia
Puppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina
Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED WITH WIRE IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS
Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues and to help us keep safe the rescued dogs we are sponsoring but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org as a ‘gift’. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

Poisoning of dogs ordered in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia

15592551_10154339702341219_1779915915_nIn March of 2015 we published news of dogs poisoned in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia where strays were poisoned using a variety of methods including crushed glass being added to food, Demestos and other toxins. Many of the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local TNR campaignWe placed a call to action in our blog and on Facebook and asked you to email and fax the authorities in Donji Vakuf. Many of you did, and we learned that this had a positive result, with a reduction in these illegal, inhumane poisonings. However, we have just been informed that it’s starting up again, that a mass poisoning of strays is once again being organised. AGAIN WE NEED YOUR HELP TO STOP THIS! All details on who to contact, with draft letters to email are towards the end of this blog.

What is occurring in Donji Vakuf is a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina and is happening in populated areas, as before. 

15595612_10154342074891219_1835113338_oA concerned citizen told us: “First, let me try to explain how these non-humans operate. They are completely organised. In this town, no one can do anything without the police knowing. So I’m sure the police are involved. Half an hour ago I passed one part of town and there was not a single dog. Three days ago there were at least  20 street dogs in this area. My assumption is that people from hunting associations are poisoning dogs by order of the mayor of the municipality but there is no proof. I am doing everything I can to track and document what is happening. I know the hunter’s vehicles. But so far I have no proof. Very likely they finish their work and I am too late to witness it. I reported the poisoning that happened last year, and this year I asked the police how far has the investigation progressed. They answered that they did not even have a blood sample analysis and that all dogs are listed as “allegedly” poisoned. The third participant in the poisoning is the utility company that quickly removes corpses, so I have only pictures of 2 poisoned dogs.All dogs are poisoned in the city’s populated area. I believe at least 50 dogs have been poisoned but I only have pictures of just two of the dogs, due the rapid removal of corpses.

I just pray that you can somehow put pressure on the municipal authorities. Please write articles, blogs. Please send emails because I know they read them and they retreat when they receive an email or fax from the EU or the USA. If an association for the protection of animals in the EU reacted, they would re-think what they are doing. Especially put pressure on the Municipal Council. I know of 21 councillors and not one is an animal lover.”

This concerned citizen has also asked everyone to contact the Landskrona municipality in Sweden. They are a big donor for development to the Donji Vakuf municipality. He asks us to please tell them them what they do with the dogs in Donji Vakuf. Details below.

15555167_10154342074851219_1527282091_o

Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist tells us that an investigation is being conducted on the basis of her previous criminal report on poisonings in this area but the police are obstructing the investigation. Dalida told us: “I will take all necessary actions to stop this. It means that I will try to force the prosecutors to send an inspector from the Cantonal police instead of police officers from Vakuf itself.

Last year dogs were poisoned on the city streets, in the doorways of buildings, in the city parks. The Veterinary Station of Donji Vakuf confirmed poison was used to kill the dogs, given the symptoms, and they stated that half the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local campaign.

15592251_10154339702346219_1161814554_n

This brutal means to tackle a stray dog problem will have consequences on the consciousness of younger generations, sending a message that breaking the law goes unpunished and that it is acceptable to torture and kill animals. The silence of the inspectors, veterinarians, and police, who do nothing to investigate these atrocities and punish the perpetrators is shocking.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina torture and killing animals is a common occurrence. In adults the offence is punishable by fine or imprisonment, however the arrest and prosecution of perpetrators of such crimes very rarely occur.

You will find links to other reports of such crimes at the end of this blog.

FIVE THINGS YOU CAN DO TO HELP. Do not forget to email the authorities listed below in Sweden (number 2 on the list).

1. Please send emails and faxes to the officials involved in the Donji Vakuf municipality below, letting them know you are aware of what is happening and that it contravenes the laws of the country. Please ask them to ensure this incident does not discourage further sterilisation programs, that they must  engage the support of the local police and media in implementing these programs. Please ask them to investigate this crime and to ensure that the populace are informed about the animal welfare laws of the country and the humane procedures that can be successfully enforced to ensure control of stray dog populations, and that in fact killing animals is not a solution, on the contrary, the problem is further complicated because animals migrate and the territory of the killed dogs becomes occupied by other, less socialized individuals.

Huso Sušić, Mayor of Donji Vakuf
Email: huso.susic@donji-vakuf.ba
Fax: + 387 30 509-615

Chief of Inspections Sector
Muhamed Sijamija
Email: muhamed.sijamija@donji-vakuf.ba
Fax:+ 387 30  509-615

Municipality of Donji Vakuf 
Email: opcinadv@bih.net.ba
Fax: + 387 30 / 509-615

Nedžad Karahodžić  (Komandir/Zapovjednik – police chief) 
Policijska stanica Donji Vakuf
Telephone-fax copy + 387 30-205-550
Emails: mupsbk@bih.net.ba
glasnogovornik@muptravnik.com.ba
administracija@muptravnik.com.ba

Zvonko Mandić
Inspectorate: Odsjek inspekcije Bugojno
Fax +387 30 251 051
E-mail: sbkprivreda@bih.net.ba

Ivica Sivonjić – Assistant Chief, Travnic Municipality:
Phone and fax: + 387 (o) 30 511 791/ (0) 30 511 277 ext 214
E-mail address: ivica.sivonjic@opcinatravnik.com.ba

You may use the following letter as a draft. Please personalise the letter, addressing the person you are sending it to, and signing it with your name:

*****

Dear

We have been informed about the  recent illegal poisoning and killing of dogs in Donji Vakuf. We are aware that this occurred last year, and that it caused an international outcry. We ask that you ensure, once again, that the perpetrators of this vile act are brought to justice, and that the citizens of your municipality are educated regarding the effective and legal method of curbing the stray dog population: TNR (trap, neuter, release). We ask you to ensure the government authorities, the police, the local media and the veterinary inspectorate work together in implementing the BiH animal welfare laws and continue to implement sterilisation of stray dogs. 

The animal welfare laws of Bosnia Herzegovina are good, applicable laws but the issue of the failure of the BiH authorities to apply even the barest minimum of the law to ensure the safety of the animals must be immediately addressed. We are sure you are aware of the numerous studies showing that those who are cruel to animals are very likely to commit crimes against people. Furthermore, if you do not bring the perpetrators to justice, you send a message to the younger generations that breaking the law goes unpunished and that it is acceptable to torture and kill animals.

We urge you to implement internationally agreed-upon guiding principles on humane stray dog population control and management and allocate resources to ensure such principles are followed in an ongoing and systematic manner, which is the only viable solution to curbing stray dog and cat populations.

Yours,

*****

2. Please contact the Landskrona municipality in Sweden and their embassy in Bosnia. They are a big donor to the Donji Vakuf municipality please tell them them what they do with the dogs in Donji Vakuf: 
Landskrona Municipality Facebook Page with contact details:
https://www.facebook.com/Landskronastad/
Their website: http://www.landskrona.se/
Their contact details:
Monday-Friday 7:30 to 17:00
Telephone: +46 (0) 418-47 00 00
23 December and 30 December, the switchboard is open 7:30 to 12:00
Address: City Hall, Drottninggatan 7, Landskrona, Sweden
email: kommun@landskrona.se
Email of the Swedish embassy in Bosnia: ambassaden.sarajevo-visum@gov.se
Tel +387 33 27 60 37
Fax: +387 33 27 60 61

Copy of a letter you can send to the Swedish authorities is at the end of this blog.

3. Email your Embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina, asking them to work with the Bosnian authorities to ensure that the animal welfare laws of the country are enforced, that the citizens are educated in studies showing there is a direct link between animal cruelty and cruelty to humans, and that the most effective means of stray animal population control is through consistently applied sterilisation programs. To find your embassy, go here: http://embassy.goabroad.com/embassies-in/bosnia-and-herzegovina

4. Contact any international animal welfare organisations you know, asking them to send letters as per the instructions above.

5. In order to investigate these contraventions of the Animal Welfare Law, activists need support. If you can assist in funding legal investigations please donate as per the instructions below via Paypal to donations@awabosnia.org, but make sure to mark your donation as ‘VAKUF’. We can also use funds to help poisoned dogs who survive but need veterinary care. Please join the AWABosnia Facebook group for updates.

COPY OF LETTER YOU CAN SEND TO SWEDISH EMBASSY (with thanks to Dalida Kozlic for drafting this for us)

Dear Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark,

Since the city Landskrona helps development of the municipality of Donji Vakuf in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as having a partnership relationship with Donji Vakuf, officials and authorities of Landskrona need to be aware of illegal and cruel atrocities that are currently happening in Donji Vakuf.

In March of 2015 stray dogs were poisoned using a variety of methods including crushed glass being added to food, bleach and other toxins. Many of the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local TNR campaign.

Please see the following information:
https://inmemoryofvucko.org/2015/03/10/dogs-poisoned-in-donji-vakuf-bosnia/

https://inmemoryofvucko.org/2015/04/14/official-investigation-ordered-into-donji-vakuf-dog-poisoning/

Unfortunately, another illegal and mass killing of stray dogs started in Donji Vakuf a few days ago. Dogs are being poisoned. Updates about this crime can be found also on the blog In Memory of Vucko above.

This is a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina and is occurring in populated areas, as before.

Also, I want to inform you about the background of these atrocities that is connected with organised crime on the highest level of political organisation.

As you know, the Bosnian War was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995. Casualties of the war were not only people. Animals also were casualties and suffered a lot during the war. Bosnia and Herzegovina did not have an animal Protection and Welfare Act until 2009. The animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina was legislated and entered into force by Parliamentary Assembly in 2009. This Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals is one of the best in Europe but nevertheless corrupt authorities are often involved in illegal killing of stray and wild animals because of money laundering.

Stray animals are victims of notorious abuse. Politically eligible people construct so-called shelters for stray animals, which really only have the a function of a concentration camp and then the officials invoice for false spay/neuter programs, as well as for food that is not in fact given to animals. Fake invoices are created for veterinary examinations and treatment, and the means for euthanasia. In reality, stray animals are being abused, harmed, and killed in the worst possible ways, by methods which the medieval Inquisition would envious. It is illegal and represents a series of violations of Criminal law as well as Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Actually the Animal Protection and Welfare Act is an absolutely enforceable and functional law and that is not enforced because of political interests and personal enrichment as above.

The problem in Bosnia and Herzegovina is that the protection of animals is often identified with the financial situation in the country. It is a complete absurdity. Cases of animal abuse are not considered as awful, illegal acts and animal rescuers are presented as “fools” and people who “do not have anything better to do.” This shows that the society does not understand or concern themselves with beings unable to fight for themselves and their rights, as well as having a complete lack of empathy for those who suffer.

Prosecution of the perpetrators of  crimes against animals very rarely occur. It is evident that it is not a necessary training of police officers, nor for prosecutors and judges. When it comes to the response of police officers, it usually goes in the direction that cases of animal abuse are considered an unimportant offence. Police officers and inspectors are not familiar with all the consequences and symptoms that animal abuse represents.

The problem of judicial institutions is similar.

The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs in Bosnia is a direct consequence of the failure to implement the laws, as well as a series of obstructions and misuse of the Act on the Protection and Welfare of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a lex specialis (the main legislation) in the field of treating animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act, as well as related by-laws, are the main legal framework for all other laws and by-laws that are legislated by the legislative authorities at any level of organization of authority in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

By attempting only a partial and non-systematic implementation of the Act, the suffering of stray dogs on the streets will only widen further, and budget funds will be spent on non-purpose, illegal and unsystematic attempts to solve the problem. Instead of solving the problem with legal solutions, authorities have been financing the killing of stray animals in illegal pounds for years. Financing of illegal pounds is a violation of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, as well as a serious offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Failure to implement the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is the result of a series of abuses and obstructions as well as of the authorities dealing only with consequences and not with the causes of the problem, and the causes are the abandonment of animals, irresponsible ownership and uncontrolled reproduction.

Increased numbers of dogs on the streets is always and only a direct result of irresponsible ownership, and failure to implement preventive measures that are provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, such as punishing those who abandon animals, the full identification of ownership and pets, implementing spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and education and information campaigns which are aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem.

The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals very clearly and precisely provides solutions for dealing with an overpopulation of stray animals in Bosnia. The first legal obligation of authorities is to build shelters for stray animals, whose purpose is to give good care for stray animals until they are adopted. Another legal obligation of the authorities is the registration of ownership of animals.

Finally, after seven years the State Veterinary Office enacted the laws on registration, micro-chipping and identification of ownership of animals Bosnia and Herzegovina, but it has not yet established a unified register of ownership of animals. Abandoning of animals by their owners is a direct generator of the problem, and the cause of abandoning of animals is the policy of impunity of people who abandon their animals. The only way to solve this problem is for municipalities and cantons to establish their own registries of ownership of animals, and this will significantly contribute to improving the situation in the canton, and then the entity and state level. Sarajevo Canton authorities have already been offered software for the registration of ownership of animals.

If the registry of tagged animals and owners of animals is established, it will enable the identification, prosecution and punishment of people who abandon animals. The implementation of repressive measures will directly affect the consciousness of citizens and achieve the function of a general and special prevention and repression. Because of the absence of a register of breeders, illegal breeding causes an increasing of number of stray animals. Irresponsible or unregistered breeders and breeding contributes to increasing the number of stray animals.

Although it is their legal obligation, municipalities and cities refuse to finance the construction and maintenance of adequate shelters for stray animals because of poor financial conditions, but rescuers and concerned citizens witness everyday improper and illegal spending of budget funds. Also false information about the cost of maintaining shelters is published. If violators of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals are punished, the funds raised from fines ought to be directed towards the construction and maintenance of shelters for stray animals. Also implementation of the Act of Protection and Welfare of Animals can be financed by funds collected from legally obligatory vaccination of dogs against rabies. Until shelters for stray animals are built, municipalities can assist by financing the feeding of stray animals, and authorities are obliged to implement spay/neuter projects.

If the shelters for stray animals, which must be “centres for treatment and adopting of stray animals,” are built and maintained in accordance with state regulations and law, and if there is an appropriate policy for establishing and managing shelters, the cost will be low. Quality education and raising awareness of the citizens will mean an increase in the percentage of adoption of abandoned animals.

Hygienic services are directly related to the existence of shelters for stray animals and because of this, the establishment of hygienic services cannot be an independent measure to solve the problem and to decrease the population of stray animals. Hygienic services must be established in accordance with the provisions of the law on the establishment and the conditions that hygienic services must fulfil in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The purpose of a hygienic service is capturing and transport of stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters. Certainly the establishment of a legal  hygienic services is necessary, but hygienic services cannot exist and work without implementing all the other legal obligations of the authorities, especially without building shelters. If hygienic services work without implementing all the provisions and measures provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, those services do not solve the problem and they are perfect grounds for different abuses and misuses of the laws.

Only by full implementation of Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals, misuse and illegal killing in shelters and hygienic services can be prevented. Also, all responsible authorities such as the Veterinary Office, Veterinary inspection, authorised official veterinarians, police, etc., must be involved in the implementation of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, and it is their legal obligation. Authorities in Bosnia have failed to fulfil their legal obligations and many authorities that are responsible for implementation of the Act have actually violated the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. Such illegal behaviour must be punished and prevented.

Preventing of abuse, which are particularly related to the fact that stray dogs can “disappear” is only possible by consistent implementation of all the measures stipulated by the Act on the protection and welfare of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

You should be aware that the partial and manipulating misuse of Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, which has been in practice so far, only makes an even greater and longer-lasting problem. The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs can be solved by the registration of ownership of dogs, engaging a certified trainer for the protection of animals to educate people, assistance in developing of a strategy to solve the problem of stray animals and finally the building self-sustaining shelters for stray animals.

Without complete and consistently implementing of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, the problem of overpopulation of stray animals will not be solved. It is important to end the illegal practice of partial implementation of the law which is a criminal offence and which causes the problem to become even more complicated and difficult.

In this particular case the city of Landskrona can help us to stop mass killing of stray dogs with its political and financial influence on authorities of Donji Vakuf and therefore I must emphasise that if money from the budget of Landskrona is used to finance development of Donji Vakuf, your moral obligation is to act in this case and require immediate action of authorities.

Yours.
__________________________
Email this particular letter to: kommun@landskrona.se
And to:  ambassaden.sarajevo-visum@gov.se
___________________________
Related posts:

Hunters Killing Dogs Again
Official Investigation Ordered into Donji Vakuf Dog Poisoning
Dogs Poisoned in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia
Another Mass Killing of Dogs in Bosnia
Dogs Brutally Slaughtered in Bosnia HerzegovinaPuppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina

Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog Slaughter in Mostar, Bosnia Herzegovina

Yet another brutal dog murder in Bosnia Herzegovina
Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
More than 40 killed dogs found in garbage dump
Poisoning of Dogs and Cats in Glamoc, Bosnia Herzegovina
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Mass Murder of Dogs in Bosnia Herzegovina
Dog Massacre in Dobosnica, Bosnia Herzegovina
Mass Poisoning of Dogs in Bugojno, Bosnia
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

_____________________________________________
DONATIONS

Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia Herzegovina, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org . Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

Dogs Have Become Public Enemy Number One

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-48Interview with Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, in “Tacno“, 8 September 2016
Author: Predrag Blagovcanin
Translator: Jelena Martinelli, www.sprachenboutique.com

Dogs have become public enemy number one and the lightning rod for a society which suffers from all kinds of problems. If this society thinks about how to kill as many dogs as possible rather than how to make a living, here the problem starts. We are a psychopathic society that suffers from mass aggression and a society that has misdirected its aggression.

“All his life my father has been rescuing abandoned dogs. Already in Ex-Yugoslavia he was fighting against hunters and the killings of dogs in the streets. In August 2004 we barely survived a shooting in front of our family house that a member of the Breza hunting society had started and during which a dog was killed right in front of my eyes. This was the point in time when in addition to being a rescuer I became an activist and lobbyist for the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina. After I graduated from law school I continued my fight through legal protection of animals.”

Dalida Kozlic is an activist for legal protection of animals. For years she has been drawing public attention to the consequences of the non-implementation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act. For her rescue efforts and hints at financial corruption and the non-transparent public spending with respect to abandoned animals, Dalida and her family continue to suffer pressures from the local government. This interview was done after her father Eldar Kozlic was physically attacked in the premises of the municipality of Breza earlier this month. We also have spoken about the decision of the Sarajevo Canton to remove all abandoned and stray dogs from the streets for community safety reasons, the relationship between the citizens and the officials who fail to solve the problem, the politicization of this issue and other topics…

Tacno: Last week your father was physically attacked in the premises of the municipality of Breza. Can you tell us what preceded this attack and why you and your family have been under constant pressure from the local administration in this municipality?

Dalida Kozlic: In 2013 my father Eldar Kozlic and myself learned that one part of the abandoned dogs, that were in the city centre of Breza, had been caught and brought from the territory of Breza to the hunting grounds of the municipality of Ilijas. Some of the municipality officials were involved in this. The problems started, after my father and myself had reported this to the authorities in charge: First we came under attack by our neighbor Edin Velic, who was campaigning and collecting signatures against us, because we were keeping dogs on our property. Later it turned out, that most of the signatures were falsified. Many other pressures started against my family. During the trial Edin Velic admitted that he was influenced and pressured by municipality officials to give us a hard time because of our battle for animal welfare. Then, the cantonal veterinary inspection checked our premises and confirmed that our dogs were well nourished, vaccinated, medically checked and that the boxes in which they were accommodated fulfilled all the requirements of the Regulation concerning protection of dogs, who are kept as pets in Bosnia and Hercegovina. Later on we learned, that the officer for economic affairs and deputy mayor of the Breza municipality, Salih Hasanspahic, had put pressure literally every day on the veterinary inspection to issue an unfavorable report. Nevertheless, the cantonal veterinary inspection followed the findings of the local sanitary inspection: they too confirmed that all sanitary requirements were fulfilled, dogs were kept properly and that there was a sewage system. It became quiet for a while, but it seemed to be like the calm before the storm: As soon as I continued to report a series of animal abuses in Breza and killings of dogs in the county of “Rudnik Mrkog Ulja Breza”, the pressure was back on.

Then, a new decision regarding the treatment of abandoned dogs and pets was taken on the community level, and, without any legal basis, a new community inspector Elsada Sehovic took office. She too issued a report confirming that the dogs were kept in accordance to the law, however she decided that my dad had to remove the dogs from the property.

I want to emphasize that it was Muris Nuhanovic, donor to the party “Association for a better future Bosnia and Hercegovina”, who had reported us to the local inspection. This party did everything they could to change the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina, although they failed, and they are promoting killing as a solution. Also it is important to know that Muris Nurhanovic is our neighbor who I have reported to the police because of the brutal stoning of a dog, for which there is also photo evidence. The dog is safe, and against Muris Nuhanovic an investigation is being carried out. He had reported us to the local inspection after he was summoned as a suspect concerning this criminal offence. His complaint against the decision has been rejected in an accelerated procedure, while I have initiated a legal action against the local administration which is still not closed.

Once the community officials realized that they would lose the legal battle and that they could not influence my work, Halil Tuzlic, the mayor, asked for cooperation during a meeting with my father and me, and suggested that the municipality of Breza offer a piece of land where a dog shelter could be built and thus the Animal Welfare and Protection Act implemented. He asked us to help with our contacts and especially wanted me to help with the legal work and the supervision of the shelter.

Salih Hasanspahic was responsible for the coordination. The time limit to find a property was one month.  However, after two months even there was no concrete proposal, since he insisted that me and my family had to solve the entire problem of the abandoned dogs in the municipality of Breza, that the community bore no responsibility at all and that we moved our dogs to this shelter. It also turned out that he deliberately obstructed the whole process in order to put through his own interests.

My father made an appointment with him on the 2nd September 2016 in his office in the Breza town hall. When my father entered Salih Hasanspahic’s office, Salih left the office and came back in with Edin Velic. My father reacted saying that he had nothing to talk about with them. Right after that, Salih calls in Muris Nuhanovic and the local inspector and locks the office. My father tells them that he is being kept hostage, that there is nothing to discuss and demands to be set free immediately. Salih is not willing to unlock the door and tells my father that he is going to “stay until dawn if it’s necessary to solve “their” problem”. Now Muris Nuhanovic attacks my father several times who cannot leave the office, while Salih refuses to unlock the door. All this lasts for about 15 minutes, when Salih finally opens the door after Nuhanovic had tried to punch my father.

My father immediately goes to the police office, which is 50 meters away from the town hall building. The police officers find them still on site, and the criminal investigation department immediately takes over the case since there are several criminal offences involved. The public prosecution department is in charge of the case. I would like to emphasize that the illegal restraint committed by Salih Hasanspahic is especially important, and it is also very significant that it happened right on the first day of the election campaign, which is noteworthy, since I have noticed a certain resistance from Salih Hasanspahic to follow orders from the mayor, as well as a resistance against the mayor personally. The public prosecution department of the Canton of Doboj-Zenica has to take the case very seriously and take all measures foreseen by law to punish the perpetrators. This was an attempted lynching of a family that takes care of 120 dogs, which we have taken from the streets, which again would have been the duty of municipality authorities, and a family who is fighting for the implementation of the act.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-28

Tacno: The latest decision of the government of the Canton of Sarajevo to remove all the dogs from the streets of Sarajevo has upset the animal welfare organizations. Why?

Dalida Kozlic: The decision taken by the government of the Canton of Sarajevo on the session of the 30th June 2016, which orders catching of abandoned dogs on a massive scale on the territory of the Sarajevo Canton, is not only a gross violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina but also a serious form of organized business crime. This decision was preceded by the preparation of the project “Monitoring of zoonotic infectious and parasitic diseases in the population of abandoned dogs in the Canton of Sarajevo”. Project executors were the cantonal public company KJP “Veterinarska stanica d.o.o. Sarajevo”, the Veterinary faculty in Sarajevo and the Cantonal administration for inspection – the Inspectorate for the veterinary inspection. The value of the project was KM 133’000 (USD 76’000). The mentioned large-scale catching of dogs had been entrusted to the cantonal public waste management company KJKP “Rad d.o.o. Sarajevo” and KJP “Veterinarska stanica d.o.o. Sarajevo”. Responsible for the execution of the above mentioned decision was the ministry of public utilities and infrastructure of the Sarajevo Canton, while the decision and the project were financed from the budget of the Canton of Sarajevo. The Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina bans any type of experimenting and unauthorized testing on abandoned animals, while the veterinary laws and regulations of Bosnia and Hercegovina state that only the Veterinary Office of Bosnia and Hercegovina is allowed to undertake projects to determine and control diseases of any origin in the population. The scandalous, inhumane and illegal way of treating captured dogs is best observed in the example of the illegal shelter in Zunovnica. It is confirmed also through photos taken in the mentioned building, that dogs are obviously held without food and water, that they are starved and skinny and that they are literally lying in their own feces which have not been removed for a long period of time. They are exposed to contagion, they are running the risk of injuring one another, and because of these inhumane conditions they die in agony. Also, we have found out, that the dogs are taken for neutering/spaying and then are brought back not just to a dirty place, but to a place covered with feces. Zunovica is literally a concentration camp and the most horrific example of the breaking of many laws by the cantonal government itself, which spends tax money on this horrific torture of abandoned dogs.

Tacno: Can you as a lawyer explain to us, why to date the Animal Protection and Welfare Act still has not been fully implemented, although it has been adopted in 2009?

Dalida Kozlic: The Animal Protection and Welfare Act has not been implemented at all. Not because it is not possible or because it is too costly, but because in this way criminal activities become possible, just like those on the territory of the Sarajevo Canton. At first, after the act had been adopted, public authorities were not interested. Then they quickly realized that it was financially rewarding to offer illegal shelters and illegal sanitary services. There are many illegal shelters that have been set up by people who are close to politicians and people in power. These people set up illegal “shelters for abandoned animals” that are basically concentration camps, and then bill for fictitious veterinary services and food that never reaches the animals. They invoice for euthanasia drugs, while the abandoned animals are agonized and killed in the most brutal ways in these so called “shelters”. Also, according to the same principle, they set up illegal sanitary services and take money from the budgets of various municipalities. This way big money is stolen from the budgets at all levels of public administration, because, if you have legal shelters that accommodate the dogs conforming to the law, there is no possibility to steal money. If, on the contrary, you build a fence around a piece of land, where you put hundreds of dogs, for which you receive money while the dogs die of starvation, and at the same time you bill for many other “services”, then you get rich. This is the main reason why the act has not been implemented – because of organized business crime at the highest level.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-40-21

Tacno: For years you have been pointing at the fact that enormous sums of public money have been taken from the budget to mitigate the effects of this problem. Is this the actual reason why there is no systemic solution?

Dalida Kozlic: First, the administration stated, that one dog in a shelter costs KM 157 (USD 90) per month, which is not true. But this unsubstantiated story has helped that the budget provides for unjustifiably high sums for illegal shelters and sanitary services. This way the public administration worsens the problem, since as long as there are dogs on the streets, there will be stealing money from the budget. The attempt to partially implement the act will only increase the agony of the abandoned dogs on the streets as well as that of the citizens, and budget money will be wasted for the umpteenth time to solve the problem in a nonsystematic way. Apart from the many abuses and obstructions during the execution of the act, today’s failure is also the result of public authorities focusing on the effects of the problem, i.e. killing the dogs, which by the way is a criminal act and a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina. At the same time the authorities in charge do not care about solving the root cause of the problem, which is the abandonment of the dogs and the uncontrolled reproduction.

Tacno: Who is responsible that through the indifference of the public authorities, the problem of the strays has grown from a local problem to a health and safety problem for the citizens of the Sarajevo Canton and others?

Dalida Kozlic: First and foremost, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relation of Bosnia and Hercegovina, under which the Veterinary Office operates, which is responsible for the oversight and implementation of the mentioned act. The Veterinary Office of Bosnia and Hercegovina has been a passive bystander for years and with that is also an accomplice, because it does not perform the duties provided by law. Then the veterinary inspections which are not only not acting in those cases in which they are legally obliged in order to stop the horrors, but which even openly support the criminals. Then the public administration departments that did not fulfill their part of the obligations imposed by law, and that have artificially created a bigger problem, even though the obligations to systematically resolve the problem are clearly stated. Then the public prosecution office and the police who are not taking legal action against business crime and money laundering, and finally the citizens themselves, who have failed to demand that the federal act be implemented. The problem of the abandoned dogs has not endangered the health and safety of the citizens. Of course it is a problem that needs to be solved lawfully, and the sooner the law is executed the better. But the whole story about the threat to the citizens is just a pretext for this society, which suffers from mass aggression towards those who are weaker, to do whatever they want to those who cannot protect themselves. This is not a question of the human-animal relationship anymore; it’s about the future relationship of our children with their fellow humans.

Tacno: Has the resolution of the problem of abandoned animals become a politicized issue? In your opinion, why does it become a hot topic every time during an election campaign?

Dalida Kozlic: This is a political question, indeed, however, the periodic reissue of the story of how to resolve this problem, is not only a classical election campaign story. It is a story that has been created 3 years ago in order to draw attention away from much bigger problems. It is in the best interest of the authorities if there is an atmosphere of fear, and they have chosen the dogs to be public enemy number one. Post-war societies in general feel the need to vent their feelings of stress and frustration. Normal societies in post-war times focus on reconstruction and renewal. Unfortunately, our society is neither normal nor does it focus on renewal, instead the majority of our citizens are focused on non-existent issues. If people do not earn enough to meet their needs, they become dissatisfied. This can lead to changes. The authorities in Bosnia and Hercegovina always had the “perfect” way to fuel tensions through nationalism. Over time however, this was not enough anymore and they needed a new enemy. The dogs have taken this place. While our citizens tremble at the sight of an abandoned dog, they are not even aware how dangerous our society is, how high the crime and corruption rates are. While they warn their kids to stay away from the “dangerous” abandoned dogs, they fail to warn them of pedophiles, of which there are more than one would think in our society. Our citizens are so much focused on the story of the dogs; they have no idea what is going on around them.

Tacno: Has the public perception towards the people responsible for the problem changed, since very often animal welfare organizations are mentioned when it comes to responsibility for the street dogs?

Dalida Kozlic: The public perception has changed completely. First of all, the non-governmental sector has no institutional power whatsoever. These are true NGOs, people who are pointing out what needs to be improved, changed, but also what is illegal. Citizens need to be aware, that without activists, animal lovers, associations and citizens who just feed the strays, there would be up to 50% more dogs on the streets in certain areas. Can some citizens grasp that the law has clearly stated the responsibilities, obligations and competences to resolve this problem are the government’s jurisdiction, while the animal lovers and associations actually do the government’s job? We are the victims of emotional blackmail, since our only choice is to either take a dog or to leave him to the authorities for better or worse. If I say that I have 120 dogs under my care, what do the citizens think happens if I set them all free? On paper, everybody supports a united state of Bosnia and Hercegovina, but as soon as a part of the civil community promotes execution of a STATE law, then that civil community is made responsible for the problem they are, in fact, trying to solve. When in a meeting Dino Konakovic (prime minister of the Sarajevo Canton – translator’s note) says that he “couldn’t care less about a state law”, he basically says, that he is above the state, that he can do anything he likes. This is called a coup d’état. When associations and activists demand the law to be executed, then we are called crooks and liars, that we wish that there are dogs on the streets etc.… The citizens have to learn to demand that the laws be executed. We demand that. And if I say “we”, I mean every decent animal lover who does not want their money to be spent on bloodshed and finance crime.

Tacno: How can we solve the problem today? Can the issue of abandoned animals today, seven years after the enactment of the law, be solved just by executing this law?

Dalida Kozlic: When the number of the dogs on the streets increases, it is always and only the direct consequence of the behavior of irresponsible dog owners. Also, it is the consequence of the authorities’ failure to take preventive measures foreseen by the law: by not penalizing owners who abandon their dogs, by not enforcing full identification of ownership, by not following through with spaying and neutering projects and vaccinations. The authorities have failed to systematically mark the abandoned dogs, and failed to carry out education and information campaigns which should have raised public awareness about the causes of the problem. The mentioned law has determined a very clear and decided system how to solve the problem of abandoned dogs. The first legal obligation is to provide shelters with the goal of accommodating the animals until adoption. The modus operandi are described in the Regulation about forming shelters and the conditions that need to be fulfilled by the shelters for abandoned animals in Bosnia and Hercegovina. The second legal obligation in the system is the registration of pets. Until the construction of the shelters is finished, the municipalities can help with food for the abandoned animals, and of course they are obliged to spay and neuter the abandoned animals as prescribed by law. Should the shelters, which are supposed to be “centers for adoption and medical aid for abandoned animals”, be built and maintained in accordance with the public regulations, and as long the shelters are managed professionally, the costs will not be huge. With a good information campaign and by raising public awareness, the number of adoptions will increase.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-39

Tacno: To what extent are the dogs in our society stigmatized because of the neglect by the local administration and the responsible institutions, as well as because of the unprofessional journalistic reporting?

Dalida Kozlic: People are afraid of dogs; dogs are the subject of discussion and debate. Meanwhile we are one of the poorest and the most miserable country in the whole of Europe, so the deprived people take their frustration out on those who cannot protect themselves. Dogs are a channel for the anger people should feel towards those who are responsible for the way we live today. Dogs have become public enemy number one and the lightning rod for a society which suffers from all kinds of problems. If this society thinks about how to kill as many dogs as possible rather than how to make a living, here the problem starts. We are a psychopathic society that suffers from mass aggression and a society that has misdirected its aggression.

******
Interview on Tacno: Dalida Kozlić: Psi su vještački stvorena meta i proglašeni su zlom u društvu

If you want to support Dalida in her work, what she needs most is support to keep her rescues safe so she can not worry about fundraising and focus on her legal work fighting for the rights of strays of Bosnia. This month there are two YouCarings for her:

For food for over 100 rescues:

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-36-23Pension (kennel) costs for 45 rescues:

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-38-03

 

Please read related articles/blogs on this site for more information:

Money laundering behind killing of stray dogs in Sarajevo
Evidence of crimes against dogs ignored!
Illegal Catching and Killing of Dogs in Sarajevo
Terror for strays on the streets of Sarajevo
Stray Dogs in Sarajevo: a documentary
Dog Catchers of Sarajevo: Latest news
Disturbing Irregularities found in Dog Catching Service of Sarajevo
The Dog Catchers of Sarajevo are Back
Pope’s Visit to Sarajevo Means Death for Dogs

Sarajevo Demonstrations Against Illesgal Dog Catchers
Former Military Base in Sarajevo involved in dog killing?
“DOG-CATCHERS” OF SARAJEVO CAUGHT IN ACTION!
AUTHORISED SLAUGHTER OF DOGS IN SARAJEVO
2014: What is happening to the strays of Bosnia Herzegovina?

Animal Advocates Assaulted in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
The Campaign Begins With a Slaughter: You will kill the dogs, but what will you do with the beasts?
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Stop the Killing of Strays in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
BOSNIA: kill and slaughter until the dog is no more…
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!
ANTI KILL-LAW FIGHT – NOW WHAT?

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Money laundering behind killing of stray dogs in Sarajevo


HOW TO HELP THE SITUATION FOR THE DOGS IN THE PHOTOGRAPHS IS AT THE END OF THIS POST. 

Dalida Kozlic L.L.B
, lawyer and activist writes:

As you know from this previous blog, on 30 June, 2016, the Cantonal Government of Sarajevo issued a decision which requires the utility company KJKP Rad Hygienic Service (or “P.C. Rad”) in collaboration with Veterinary Station and supported by the police, to remove all stray dogs they find on the streets. And as we have already documented, the authorities of Canton Sarajevo have once again started mass catching of stray dogs. Why? In order to launder as much money as possible and in order to destroy as many dogs as  possible.

14249747_1114575828609310_3816075098329569669_o

A review of official documents demonstrates that money is being stolen from the budget of Canton Sarajevo:

22264189_1171527922908978_6226496771786389059_nP. C. Veterinary station Ltd. Sarajevo, Veterinary Inspection of Canton Sarajevo and the Veterinary faculty of the University of Sarajevo are conducting a project called “Monitoring of Infectious and Parasitic Diseases of Zoonotic Type of the Population of Stray dogs in Sarajevo“. This project is the instigator of the mass action concerning catching and removal of stray dogs.

The project is valued at 133.000 KM, approximately  68,205.00 Euros. This project provides funding for the euthanasia of 300 dogs, which are assumed to be sick (i.e. without any medical examination). Essentially, in preparing the project, authorities have decided to illegally kill 300 dogs.

According to this project, funds are also provided for 500 dogs to be microchipped, vaccinated and placed in shelters (which are illegal since they do not comply with the laws).  There is no clear information what will be done with a further 200 dogs which the project also provides funds for catching.

22According to provisions of the animal welfare laws of Bosnia and Herzegovina, it’s prohibited to kill dogs that can treated and cured by veterinarians. Also, according the provisions, it is strictly prohibited to experiment on stray animals.

In addition, by law, only the Veterinary Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina is obliged to control diseases amongst the population of all animal species in the country and only the Veterinary Office can conduct projects of control, prevention and suppression of such diseases.

The Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals is the main legislation concerning treatment of animals in Bosnia. Authorities of one canton (administrative division) must implement this law and it is a criminal offence to finance activities that are done in accordance with illegal decisions of lower level authorities.

14225350_1114575611942665_3682593145194114853_nIt is important to emphasise that 68,205.00 Euros is allocated for this one project, a project that is used as a ‘reason’ for the mass removal of stray dogs from the streets of Sarajevo. Hundreds of thousands of Euros are allocated for the hygienic services as well as for shelters – both of which are not running in accordance with the laws –  and these funds will be laundered through these hygienic services and shelters which deal inhumanely with the animals.  These hygienic services and shelters receive funding for food, medications, treatment, and the catching of stray animals, but the animals do not receive any of this. Where does the money go, we ask.
————————————————-

 

NOTE: Photographs are from Zunovnica, this is the former military base in Hadzic. This is now a “shelter” of Canton Sarajevo… joining the many ‘horror’ shelters of Bosnia.This is one of the pounds the infamous dog catchers of KJKP Rad Hygienic Service bring dogs to. Dogs are left in their urine and faeces, they are starving. Conditions are almost the same as in concentration war camps. Some rescuers have managed to release a few dogs but many, many more will be brought in… it is a never-ending horror and there are no organisations within Bosnia able to help, and international animal welfare organisations have great difficulty in being involved due to the wide-spread corruption at all levels in Bosnia Herzegovina. Please also note that the situation for the citizens of the country is also dire, with some of the highest rates of unemployment in the world. Rescuers struggle to feed themselves, let alone their rescues. If you want to help please write letters as outlined in this post – there are email addresses in the post to write to. PLEASE WRITE LETTERS. Petitions do very little. We have run several petitions for a number of horror situations with hundreds of thousands of signatures collected, but NO CHANGE. Letters to your embassy in Bosnia, to International Welfare organisations are the only way.

You can also send funds as outlined at the end of this post via Paypal to donations@awabosnia.org and we will send it on to rescuers who have taken dogs out.

FOR YOUR CONVENIENCE HERE IS THE INFORMATION FROM THE POST MENTIONED ABOVE:

HOW TO HELP:

PLEASE NOTE THAT PETITIONS DO VERY LITTLE. WE HAVE ORGANISED MANY WITH HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF SIGNATURES OBTAINED, BUT NO CHANGE HAS HAPPENED. It is better to write letters as follows:

1. Write letters to your embassy representative in Bosnia:

To find your Embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina go here:
http://embassy.goabroad.com/embassies-in/bosnia-and-herzegovina
Finding any MEP in Europe – a ‘Euromap’
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/meps/en/map.html
Finding any MEP by the alphabetical name list can be done via the following link: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/members/expert/alphaOrder.do?language=EN


2. Write letters to the Bosnian authorities:

Prime minister of Canton Sarajevo, Dino Konaković,   premijer@vlada.ks.gov.ba
Minister of Utility infrastracture, Senad Hasanspahić ministar@mki.ks.gov.ba and
mki@mki.ks.gov.ba

3. Write letters to international animal welfare organisations – google this for email addresses or go here on Wikipedia for information

Below is a draft letter you can modify to use. Or you can simply copy and paste the above blog and ask that something be done. Please be sure to address it to a specific person and to sign it, including your contact details.

________________________________________________

Dear XXX

Millions of citizens care deeply about animal welfare and are sickened to see constant reports of horrific animal cruelty. Countries seeking to acquire EU membership need to demonstrate certain standards of animal care, and so I want to bring to your attention Bosnia and Herzegovina, who are seeking admission, and yet who constantly contravene their own animal welfare laws.

In 2009, the Law on Animal Welfare and Protection entered into force in Bosnia Herzegovina. Amongst other things this law proscribes that owners of dogs and cats are to register their animals at the veterinarian organization and mark them with microchips. Additionally, within the period of one year, institutions were obliged to build humane shelters in which all abandoned and lost animals found on the streets should be placed after being caught by a hygienic service, and in which they would be treated on a humane way and provided adequate veterinarian care. Until then, stray animals could be spayed and turned back to the street, while only sick, aggressive and dogs in agony were to be euthanized.

So far, no legally proscribed measure has been conducted. Since the local authorities have not conducted sufficient neutering campaigns on time and properly, the number of stray dogs has multiplied. Dogs Trust sterilization campaigns nave not been able to significantly reduce the numbers of dogs in Sarajevo. Owners are continuing to abandon their unsterilised dogs or the unsterilised offspring of their pets, so the number of dogs in the Canton Sarajevo still seems to be around several thousands. No one knows the exact number as there is no database. Local authorities built several shelters around Sarajevo in which conditions are even not close to a satisfactory level, animals have no vet care, conditions and treatment are inhumane. These shelters include Praca, Hresa, Gladno Polje and Zunovnica with a maximum capacity of around 600 dogs in total. Dogs often die due to sickness or are attacked by other dogs. Conditions are almost the same as in concentration war camps. Dogs survive thanks to groups of volunteers and animal-friendly citizens of Sarajevo who visit them and provide food and some medicines. Some public companies donate some food or food scraps. Lucky dogs are homed in Bosnia or abroad thanks to volunteers.

Thousands of those remaining on the streets cannot be placed in shelters as they are overcrowded. Furthermore, there is not any official evidence as to how many dogs are taken from the streets, how many arrive in the shelters, what their health condition is, how many are euthanized and for what reason, and how many are currently at the shelters. There is no adequate inspection in practice, no official cooperation with the NGO sector which could make and keep evidence on everything in cooperation with the authorities. Hence dogs are often left at the mercy of employees of the hygienic service and shelter owners. No one knows how many die in between visits of the volunteers and due to what reason.

On 30 June, 2016, Cantonal Government issued a decision which requires A utility company KJKP Rad (Hygienic Service), in collaboration with Veterinary Station and supported by the police, to remove all stray dogs they find on the street. In the course of their action, they take every dog, regardless of whether they are aggressive, sick, spayed (with a visible marked at the plate on the ear) or not. Even babies. While the Government is claiming that this is being done legally and in a human way, the implementation of the conclusion is illegal due to the fact that there is no space and no conditions at the shelters to put new arrivals of dogs. Therefore, it is obvious that hundreds and thousands of dogs taken from the streets are killed.

Furthermore, government public statements have been made with regards to this dog catching stating there is a need to collect aggressive and ill street dogs, which is part of the country’s animal welfare law. The same law prohibits the destruction of healthy dogs. And yet, animal welfare activists have documented healthy and non-aggressive dogs been caught and removed. In addition, the problem of strays in the city is a result of owners either letting their unsterilised dogs free-roam, or because they abandon their unsterilised dogs.

Increased numbers of dogs on the streets is a direct result of irresponsible ownership, with owners either letting their unsterilised dogs free-roam, or because they abandon their unsterilised dogs and because of government failure to implement preventive measures that are provided by the laws, such as punishing those who abandon animals, creating a registration of pets, providing adequate spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and education and information campaigns which are aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem.

The BiH law on Protection and Welfare of Animals very clearly provides solutions for dealing with an overpopulation of stray animals in Bosnia. The first legal obligation of authorities is to build shelters for stray animals, whose purpose is to care for stray animals until they are adopted. Conditions that all shelters must fulfil are outlined in the law.

Regarding registration of pets, for seven years the State Veterinary Office has not enacted the laws on registration, micro-chipping and identification of ownership of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina, nor has established a unified database for registration.

The only way to solve this problem is for municipalities and governments to establish their own database of owned of animal. If the database of tagged animals and owners of animals is established, it will enable the identification, prosecution and punishment of people who abandon the animals.

Also, the dog shelters in this country are documented by animal rescue organisations and activists to be inhumane ‘death camps’ for dogs, and are in fact used for money laundering purposes: money destined for the dogs and the shelters is pocketed.

I am writing to ask your assistance in ensuring that the current ‘dog catching’ service of by the public utility company KJKP Rad Ltd. Sarajevo and Public company “Veterinary station” Ltd. be monitored and investigated to ensure it works according to Bosnian law and that the shelters in Sarajevo – in particular Zunovnica shelter – and other public shelters in the country have radically improved conditions,  and in particular that animal activists be allowed to document and ensure that the laws are applied.

We have been advised by BiH lawyers and activists that as the BiH politicians themselves are involved in stealing of money from illegal shelters and hygienic ‘dog catching’ services, and that since the prosecutors and police officers are also corrupt, the only way to force the BiH political establishment to stop their illegal practises is pressure from international organisations and especially embassies.

The existing Animal Welfare and Protection Act of Bosnia-Herzegovina is in fact a good and enforceable law. The only reason the law is not being enforced is because certain political and professional circles do not want to do it.

The law states that every city and town has to build shelters for stray animals. All shelters for stray animals have to provide a NO KILL policy and adequate care, including veterinary care for the animals housed there. Again, the truth is that the conditions in most public shelters are horrific, with dogs being left for days without water, food or care of any kind. There is documented evidence of this.

As you will be aware, the European Union provides the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina and with many millions of euros worth of financial aid each year.  My understanding of the provisos attached to these aid packages is that there is a requirement for the recipient country to abide by EU laws which would include the laws related to animal welfare. The Commission has stated that aligning national animal welfare legislation with EU law is a prerequisite for EU membership.

I would urge you please to raise the above issues with the European Commission and the European Parliament’s Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of animals (http://www.animalwelfareintergroup.eu/) and, critically, with your representatives in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The issue of the failure of the BiH authorities to apply even the barest minimum of the law to ensure the safety of the animals must be addressed. It is imperative that the European Commission and the Parliament discusses this matter with their Bosnia and Herzegovina counterparts.

We urge you to help ensure that the Bosnia Herzegovina authorities implement internationally agreed-upon guiding principles on humane stray dog population control and management, and that resources be allocated to ensure such principles are followed.

Many thanks for your time, I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards,

 

14241525_1114575748609318_7498666373642445078_o

Please read related articles/blogs on this site for more information:

Evidence of crimes against dogs ignored!
Illegal Catching and Killing of Dogs in Sarajevo
Terror for strays on the streets of Sarajevo
Stray Dogs in Sarajevo: a documentary
Dog Catchers of Sarajevo: Latest news
Disturbing Irregularities found in Dog Catching Service of Sarajevo
The Dog Catchers of Sarajevo are Back
Pope’s Visit to Sarajevo Means Death for Dogs

Sarajevo Demonstrations Against Illesgal Dog Catchers
Former Military Base in Sarajevo involved in dog killing?
“DOG-CATCHERS” OF SARAJEVO CAUGHT IN ACTION!
AUTHORISED SLAUGHTER OF DOGS IN SARAJEVO
2014: What is happening to the strays of Bosnia Herzegovina?

Animal Advocates Assaulted in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
The Campaign Begins With a Slaughter: You will kill the dogs, but what will you do with the beasts?
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Stop the Killing of Strays in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
BOSNIA: kill and slaughter until the dog is no more…
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!
ANTI KILL-LAW FIGHT – NOW WHAT?

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.