BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Europe
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Saturday, 21 April, 2001, 00:07 GMT 01:07 UK
Romania dog cull starts
Dog behind bars
The mayor did not release the number of dogs killed
By Central Europe correspondent Nick Thorpe

The mayor of Bucharest has ordered the immediate slaughter of all stray dogs in the city, abandoning an earlier plan to sterilise them and offer them for adoption.


My goal is clear. No dogs on the streets. They eat up too much public money

Mayor Traian Basescu
Animal rights groups in Romania and abroad have condemned the cull.

But the Mayor Traian Basescu says he has no choice but to rid the city once and for all of the animals which are estimated to number up to 300,000.

The fate of hundred of thousands of stray dogs has hung in the balance since proposed starting date of the cull on 1 March.

Adoption plan

Protests spearheaded by the former actress turned animal rights activist, Brigitte Bardot, led to a compromise.


Euthanasia is not mercy killing, it's just killing

Romanian Committee for Pet Protection
The dogs were to be rounded up, sterilised then offered for adoption. Ms Bardot was reported to have offered $150,000 towards the plan.

But since then, only 2,000 dogs have been adopted. And the mayor claims that most of these have been returned to the street.

He appears to have now lost patience and has said that all strays including those already in compounds must be put to death.

Opinion is divided in Romania over the planned slaughter. Many inhabitants of Bucharest have become quite fond of their local strays.

Others fear them and applaud the mayor's courage for tackling a problem which has tarnished the city's image for the past decade.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

15 Jan 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Romania
15 Jan 01 | Europe
Timeline: Romania
02 Mar 01 | Europe
Bardot 'saves' Bucharest's dogs
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Europe stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Europe stories