Anja Hazekamp (Partij voor de Dieren, Netherlands) has made an urgent call for the establishment of a European Parliament Committee of Inquiry to investigate abuses in animal transport. The MEP has reached out to colleagues from across the political spectrum this morning at the opening of the ninth European Parliament.
“Every day almost 4 million animals are transported in Europe. A lot goes wrong during transport. Animals are exposed to extreme temperatures, transport is lengthy and water and food are not accessible to all animals. Lack of space and abuse are also common. European rules on animal transport have existed for fifteen years yet animals are not adequately protected,” Hazekamp deplored.
The European Parliament has the option of setting up a committee of inquiry when there are ‘breaches or instances of maladministration in the application of Union law’.
According to Hazekamp, there has been a structural violation of the rules regarding animal transport:
“Civil society organisations have sent hundreds of detailed reports to the European Commission describing serious and systematic violations of the European Regulation on animal transport. Despite repeated calls to end animal suffering, real action has not been forthcoming, both at European and at national level. The EU is just watching the structural violation of rules and the suffering of millions of animals. This cannot continue,” Hazekamp said.
A European Parliament Commission of Inquiry is able to hear from witnesses, request documents, organise hearings and undertake fact-finding missions. The support of 188 MEPs is needed for its establishment.
Earlier this year, a majority in the European Parliament supported a proposal from MEP Hazekamp and the Party for the Animals to set up a Committee of Inquiry into animal transport abuses at the start of this parliamentary term. If the renewed parliament and a majority of the group leaders agree with this demand, the committee of inquiry can be realised.
Partij voor de Dieren