Animals are brutally killed in the “Vardarishte” shelter of Skopje, FYROM according to local reports (Photo oipa.org)
A couple of months ago, the International Organization of Animal Protection (OIPA) had raised public awareness about the cruel treatment, stray dogs endure in the “Vardarishte” shelter, in Skopje, FYROM. The latter is an institution which “literary has closed its doors for the people who want to adopt a homeless dog and kill innocent animals”. Apparently there is one only shelter over there, where dogs are killed in huge number and impressive frequency. According to OIPA’s report, the Mayor, responsible of the shelter, declared openly that dogs must be killed, everyone of them.
Volunteers protested, of course, but it’s been vain. Frequently we are becoming witnesses of more urgent calls, even by concerned FYROM’s citizens who are desperately urging public awareness for what they describe as Genocide of Dogs in Skopje, FYROM.
Read the following eye-witness account of one of these concerned citizens.
Please support us and help us immediately, if possible, in our desperate trying to stop the massacre of the homeless puppies in our city Skopje, the capital of the FYROM, by the local government. They DO NOT respond to our appeals to stop with their inhuman behavior of murdering helpless little creatures.
In FYROM there is not even one facility center that would take care of the homeless animals, and there is only one temporary (transit) center, holding facility Vardariste. But, this stationary instead of implementing the program ¿catch, neuter, RELEASE¿ for which it is constituted and paid for, this institution is implementing mass liquidation and killing every second dog they catch. The official statistics of the city till the 1st of January 2009 indicate high 60% of euthanasia, and what is happening these last few weeks is 100% genocide. The dogs are not being brought back, but literally disappear.
In an attempt to portray the situation better, we will start by informing you of certain facts.
1. In FYROM there isn’t one animal shelter or a facility of that kind that would take care and give home to the stray animals. There is only one transit facility, the Vardarishte sanctuary, which was created in an attempt to shelter the stray animals, keep them off the
streets and to implement the Catch, Neuter, Release program. However, instead of engaging in this animal friendly project, the center resorts to mass liquidation of the dogs, brought from the streets.
2. According to the state’s official statistical data from January, 2007, 56.7% of the captured animals are euthanized. However, from unofficial sources, anonymous people from inside the center, over 90% of the animals have been euthanized in the last month.
3. For the treatment of almost 10,000 stray dogs, there is only one veterinarian hired by the sanctuary.
4. The sanctuary makes no efforts to advertise animal adoption, to help increase the public awareness of animal rights and to let the public know that one such center exists. In fact, an unofficial poll indicates that 90% of Skopje residents have never heard of Vardarishte.
5. Individuals who are interested in adopting animals often times are rudely discouraged by Vardarishe¿s staff.
6. After our reaction and complaints against the massive euthanasia, the sanctuary closed its doors to the public and the advocates of animal rights. Its hours of operation are now 9am till noon every Friday when most of the public is at work.
7. There is a lack of monitoring by the NGOs responsible for the wellbeing of the animals in FYROM.
8. The conditions in Vardariste are terrible: The employees in Vardariste wash the cages wit cold water while the dogs are in it. They are starving, trembling from cold, and little puppies usually get sick and die couple of days after they are caught because nobody take care of them.
We believe that without proper intervention from the local authorities to help increase the public awareness for humane treatment and care of the animals, the future of FYROM’s homeless animals won¿t be secured. Instead of working as a team with the human societies to eradicate the problem, the authorities find it easier to handle the stray animal issue by eliminating them.
In addition, we believe that we need the moral support of well organized and established organizations in Europe and the rest of the world to help us successfully put and end to the animal cruelty in FYROM. Without the help of such organizations our voices won¿t be heard. An EU candidate should not be considered a competitive body when the minimum requirements in terms of animal rights and humane treatment of the same are not even close to being met. And through cooperation with European organization this situation will be brought to public attention outside the region.
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