Milan, thousands at the animal rights march: ‘Hands off sanctuaries’

Buses from all over Italy, but also from France, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland to demonstrate against the killing of the nine pigs from the Cuori Liberi shelter in Sairano, in the province of Pavia

There are thousands of them, ten thousand for the organizers, five thousand for the police station, the participants in the procession underway in Milan, organized to demonstrate dissent after the killing of nine pigs of the Cuori Liberi refuge of Sairano, in the province of Pavia, last September 20th. Numerous buses arrived from all over Italy, but also from France, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland. The appointment was set in front of the Palazzo della Lombardy region, an institution that ordered the killing of shelter pigs that had come into contact with the African swine fever virus. And the cry of ‘Hands off shrines’the procession is crossing the city, heading to Piazza San Babila, where it should end.

“The Lombardy Region seems intent on declaring war on the shelters – explains the coordinator of the Network of free animal sanctuaries in Italy, Sara d’Angelo-: the forced incursion of the police forces in Sairano and the special surveillance to which some shelters in the network were subjected, represents a threat to the very existence of all those structures which today, in Italy, represent the only alternative of non-violent coexistence between man and other animals considered “productive”. But we are not afraid and we will not stop until we get different protocols for shelter animals and the pig massacre happened at the Cuori libera shelter, it will just be a bad nightmare.”

“As shelters – he adds – we immediately made ourselves available to collaborate with the authorities to implement biosecurity measures and treat pigs affected by swine fever”. Also because “mass killing cannot and must not be the only possible measure swine fever it is not a health emergency, but an economic emergency that protects the interests of a few enormous intensive farms which today are unsustainable from both an ethical and economic point of view”. And then, concludes D’Angelo, “more and more veterinarians are taking a position, in addition to the fact that even from a legal point of view there is an opening: the TAR will accept our appeal for additional reasons and will schedule the hearing on the merits”. Which means that “we can still have justice for the pigs who were killed and for the abuses and irregularities that we believe were committed by the institutions.”