After campaigning for two years, Greek animal welfare organisations have finally achieved their goal: the implementation of the European Commission Regulations (EU) 2015/262, commonly known as the Equine Passport Regulation, by the Greek Government.
So far existing Greek legislation was inadequate with respect to ensuring equine welfare standards. Without proper identification, horses, donkeys and mules couldn’t be linked to the person responsible for their welfare. Thanks to the implementation of the EU legislation, owners are now required by law to care responsibly for their animals and ensure welfare standards are upheld. Failure to look after their animals properly will result with legal penalties for owners.
Rosa Roussou, President of Ippothesis said, “Although the EU directives have existed for some time, it has always been more convenient for the authorities not to implement them. As a result it is impossible to determine the official number of equidae living in Greece. Backyard breeding, trading without ownership certificates, online exchanges of equidae , selling new-born foals and an absolute lack of any code of good practice backed by legislation are all part of the awful reality horses, donkeys and mules have to face everyday. This is leading to numerous cases of neglect and abuse. The only way to finally start protecting them is via their registration and identification”.
Elisa Geskou, Veterinary surgeon, Equine Project Coordinator for Greek Animal Welfare Fund / Animal Action Hellas said, “As vets we have for years been working hard to improve the welfare of horses, donkeys and mules through our outreach programme, especially working animals in island communities. The introduction of the EU ‘Equine Passport’ will mean all equines should be registered and identified with a Universal Equine Life Number (UELN). Hopefully, this will help give stronger legal protection for all equidae. It is good news for animal welfare in Greece”.
In January 2018 Ippothesis and Animal Action Hellas handed over to the Greek Ministers for Environment and Energy and Agricultural Development and Food more than 12,000 letters signed by Greek citizens asking for stronger protection of equidae, in particular for the implementation of the EU Equine Passport Regulations as well as for the adoption of a Code of Good Practice for Equidae. Animal welfare organisations, veterinarians, local animal welfare groups and supportive members of both the European and National Parliaments strongly welcome the introduction the European Commission Regulations (EU) 2015/262 into Greek Law.
Read more on Ippothesis’ website
Read more on Greek Animal Welfare Fund’s website