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NEWS Turkey’s parliament approves animal rights bill long-awaited by citizens

24 Jul 2021

A proposal to amend the Animal Protection Law was adopted by the General Assembly of Parliament and passed into law on 9 July 2021. According to the new amendment, animals will be evaluated not as “commodities” or “belongings” but as ''living-beings”.

The Animal Protection Act has been reformed from the very beginning. The proposal, which included drastic changes, was passed in the plenary session of Parliament.

Imprisonment for animal torture

The new amendment paves the way for prison sentences for crimes against animals. Anyone who deliberately kills a pet can be sentenced to up to 4 years in prison.

Local governments, in cooperation with volunteer organizations, will establish animal hospices for the protection of unclaimed and depopulated animals, provide their care, treatment and carry out educational work. Local authorities will also be able to establish an animal hospital if the relevant decision-making body deems it appropriate.

Pets no longer to be referred to as ornament

After the adoption of this proposal, changes were made to the article regulating the definitions of the Animal Protection Law, and the phrase "ornament" for pets was removed.

Cat and dog owners will be obliged to register their animals using digital identification methods until end of 31 December 2022.

A pet that is cared for without commercial purpose cannot be subject to foreclosure due to the owner's debt, regardless of where it is located.

Principles about “pet and controlled animal possession, conditions of ownership, animal care, procedures and principles related to the training to be given for protection, measures to be taken to prevent damage and discomfort of animals to be taken care of, in the environment” will be determined by the regulation to be issued by the ministry.

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