MEMBERS of the Animal Party Cyprus (APC) asked Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou to raise penalties for animal abuse on Monday.
“We had a very good and constructive discussion,” Kyriacos Kyriacou, chairman of the Animal Party told the Cyprus Mail.
Kyriacou said that the minister asked APC to draft a list defining offences and proposed penalties and give him a report on penalties given in cases of animal abuse in other countries, as part of the party’s suggestion to amend the current legislation.
“We believe that the legislation as is is not preventive,” Kyriacou said.
The maximum penalty given in animal cruelty cases is one year imprisonment or fines up to €1,792.
“We want to have higher penalties with imprisonment up to three or four years in cases of severe animal abuse,” Kyriacou said.
He also said that APC is to launch an island wide campaign to raise awareness on animal poisoning.
“The goal is to distribute flyers in every district in every village informing people on current penalties on animal poisoning and to urge the public to observe and report cases so that possible perpetrators are discouraged,” Kyriacou said.
He said that the campaign will be undertaken by non-governmental-organisation Kivotos in cooperation with government bodies.
“The minister promised us his help and we will provide the know-how,” Kyriacou said.