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"Animals have the right to live with dignity," Livni says,
speaks of intention to transfer authority over animal welfare to Environmental
Zionist Union co-leader Tzipi Livni at dog shelter.. (photo credit:LOUISE GREEN)
Zionist Union co-leader Tzipi Livni pledged her party’s commitment to animal
rights issues, during a tour of the Let Animals Live dog shelter on Monday.
Livni visited the shelter, located just north of Modi’in in Kfar Rut, with
running mates MK Eitan Cabel, MK Yechiel Bar, Yoel Hasson, and Yael Cohen Paran.
During the visit, the politicians vowed to discontinue the killing of homeless
dogs and cats, to encourage sterilization and adoption, and to transfer
authority over the Animal Welfare Law from the Agriculture Ministry to the
Environmental Protection Ministry.
“Animals have the right to live with dignity; it is impossible to allow those
who treat them as agricultural produce to protect their rights,” Livni said on
“After forming the government, we intend to introduce a legislative package
that will care for the rights of animals.”
Governance over the Animal Welfare Law has been under dispute for the past few
years, with environmentalists claiming that the Agriculture Ministry
inadequately enforces the legislation. Many politicians and activists have
described the administration of the law by the Agriculture Ministry as a
conflict of interest, as the ministry is also responsible for the interests of
the industrial meat and dairy sector.
Nonetheless, the ministry has maintained that the law belongs within its
jurisdiction, as enforcement efforts against animal abuse have intensified in
During the tour at the Let Animals Live shelter, Livni addressed the fact that
about 100,000 dogs die annually in Israel because they have no homes. She
encouraged dog and cat lovers to adopt homeless animals.
For Let Animals Live, the visit of Livni and her party colleagues was the first
of a series of visits of political party representatives that the organization
is currently planning.
The organization has published a sample animal rights platform available to
politicians, which stresses the necessity of maintaining respect and compassion
to the four-legged sector.
Within the platform, Let Animals Live advocates consolidating governance over
animal rights into one authority or within the Environmental Protection
Ministry. Appropriate budgets and sufficient personnel must be allocated toward
enforcing the Animal Welfare Law as well, the organization added.
The platform also argues against betting on horse racing, and calls for a
prohibition on trading fur products, except for those used for religious
In the egg industry, chickens must be able to thrive in conditions that do not
involve restrictive cages, while in the meat industry, the brutal imports of
animals that must endure intercontinental journeys toward their slaughter must
cease, the platform continues.
The platform also demands an end to the killing of stray dogs and cats, and
requires fundamental changes in municipal dog shelter system.
“Resource consolidation of a number of local authorities is essential in this
area, in order to create a much better reality for animals in shelters and to
provide much better service to the public,” the Let Animals Live platform