Some 13,000 people have signed a petition against the operation of an a dolphinarium in Cyprus, handed over by Green Party leader Giorgos Perdikis to Agriculture Minister Nicos Kouyialis.
Signed by individuals, NGOs and international organisations, Perdikis said the move followed an announcement earlier this summer that there was a proposal for an aquarium to be built in Cyprus.
He however recommended that since there are dolphins in Cyprus’ sea, sea parks could be set up to allow dolphins and seals to live in their natural habitat, attracting tourists without harming the animals themselves.
Voice for Animals leader Mary Anastasi said keeping animals captive was not a way to educate people that had other ways of learning if they wanted to that wouldn’t entail torturing animals.
Also expressing concerns about discussions for a crocodile park that has so far not been approved, Perdikis said ‘experts’ were brought in from abroad to convince animal groups and state services to change their mind calling it a provocative move.
Stressing there were dangers to both the environment and people if a crocodile park was set up he hinted there were ‘invisible hands’ violently pushing for the park’s licence.
There were concerns the park was initially going to be a front for a breeding industry to produce crocodile skin items.