The Greens have written to Agriculture and Environment Minister Costas Kadis pressing for a specific ban on crocodile parks. They also want to see a decree banning marine animal parks in Cyprus.
They said that they were concerned that in a reply earlier this month the minister had clarified that currently the sale of crocodiles at pet shops is prohibited, but the establishment of crocodile theme parks is not.
The Greens welcomed the minister’s position that crocodile parks so not comply with the more general framework on animal welfare, but said any legal gaps in the law should be addressed immediately with legislation that will amend the existing decree to prohibit the establishment of crocodile farms.
The concern was sparked by attempts last year to secure a permit for a park to host 170-220 crocodiles that were to be imported from Israel. Various sites were proposed as locations, but residents of the communities reacted, leading to the plans stalling.
The party also urged the minister to issue a decree restoring a ban on commercial marine animal parks that host shows, in the same away as the use of circus animals has been prohibited in Cyprus.
“We expect that as an environmentally sensitive minister, Mr Kadis will correct the mistakes of the past and close holes in the government’s policy on the protection and welfare of animals that were opened by his predecessors,” the party said.