Animal rights activists protest release of suspected killers of stray dogs in Ankara
The activists complained about the lack of laws and the inadequacy of those that exist in the protection of stray animals and their rights, demanding harsher sentences to suspects who kill animals.
They are calling on authorities and politicians to step in.
The protesters said they will continue holding demonstrations until the legal process against the three suspects that were released resumes again.
Thirteen dogs died from suspected poisoning in a park in the Batıkent neighborhood of Ankara’s Yenimahalle district.
Six other dogs were being treated in clinics, while seven dogs are still missing.
Three people were detained on April 10 in relation to the incident. But the court drew city-wide anger after releasing them.
The legal status of animals has been a much-debated topic in Turkey.
Amid mounting pressure from the public, the Turkish government had hastily announced a new ministerial bill for animal rights, which was sent to parliament in April 2018, and vowed to prioritize it ahead of the June 24 elections last year. One year on, the legislation is still yet to be adopted.
Those who dare to torture animals will receive four months to three years in prison, according to the new bill.
If the perpetrator violates the freedoms of multiple animals in the same instance, his or her sentence will be increased by one-and-a-half times, rising from six months to four-and-a-half years in jail, according to the draft.