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Parliamentary questions
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22 May 2012
Question for written answer P-005171/2012
to the Commission
Rule 117
Tiziano Motti (PPE)

 Subject: EU funding for the European Football Championship in Ukraine and the slaughter of stray dogs
 Answer in writing 

The Commission’s answers to previous questions on stray animals in Europe and Ukraine all adopt the same line, which is that the EU has no competence regarding the management of stray animals. The groundswell of emotion that is rising among citizens, associations, ministers and MEPs who care about animals crosses political and national lines and it will not be appeased by an anodyne claim that the EU has no competence in the matter. With the knowledge that Article 13 of the Treaty of Lisbon describes animals as sentient beings, although the management of stray animals does not come within the ‘formulation and implementation of the Union’s policies’, and admitting the cruel treatment of stray animals as documented by many animal welfare associations not only in Ukraine but also in EU Member States such as Romania, Spain and Italy, could the Commission answer the following questions:

1. What concrete action has been taken by the Ukrainian Environment Minister, who ‘in November 2011 (…) repeatedly called for an end to the practice of the brutal killing of stray dogs in the country’ (Commission’s answer to Question E‑011178/2011)?
2. On what legal basis or on the basis of which EU partnership agreement has ‘the EU provided limited technical support mainly aimed at minimising security and safety risks of the event’ (Commission’s answer to Question E‑001678/2012)?
3. Does the Commission not believe that this, albeit limited, technical support should be used to put political pressure on the Ukrainian Government and to put an end to this slaughter of defenceless animals?
4. Point 2 of the introduction of the ‘White Paper on Sport’ (COM(2007) 0391) states: ‘In addition to improving the health of European citizens, sport has an educational dimension and plays a social, cultural and recreational role. The societal role of sport also has the potential to strengthen the Union’s external relations’. It is therefore reasonable to assume that the Commission’s funding of the technical organisation of the Football Championship in Ukraine, though limited, should involve sharing the value of the Football Championship itself and should aim to strengthen its external relations with Ukraine. According to the White Paper, the 2012 Football Championship in Ukraine will thus be an event with a significant educational dimension. Does the Commission believe that the message being sent to the Ukrainian and European public, which associates sport with the need to treat stray dogs so cruelly just to pave the way for a sporting event, is acceptable and educational?

Original language of question: ITOJ C 254 E, 04/09/2013
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