PRESS RELEASE BY THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARIAT FOR AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES AND ANIMAL RIGHTS: WBRU does not compete with NGOs for limelight, simply carries out its work

A paramount objective of the Wild Birds Regulation Unit’s work is to ensure the eradication of illegal killing and trading in wild birds. In doing so, the Unit does not “compete” with NGOs for limelight, nor is it there “to take credit” for any successful operations, the Unit said in reaction to accusations levelled by CABS, which were prompted by WBRU’s clarification uploaded on EU IMPEL network website. This was in reaction to CABS’s earlier misleading claim of the authorities’ “tolerance” towards illegal trapping.

WBRU’s statement, which highlighted the results of operations undertaken by authorities against illegal trapping over the past two weeks, and also containing a link to the recently published detailed report on the enforcement situation during 2016 autumn hunting season, is accessible from here: https://www.impel-esix.eu/?na=v&id=27&nk=196-7b2c30bee1 .

Whilst reports made by CABS and other NGOs facilitate enforcement, and are positively acknowledged in this context, it is unfortunate and unjustifiable that CABS take umbrage at the Maltese authorities for simply doing their work. “It appears that each time Malta is reported internationally in the context of the positive work being done, CABS would react angrily in a condescending manner and attempt to tarnish credibility of Maltese authorities with misleading statements, as though preferring to see Malta being unjustly portrayed in a negative light”, WBRU said.

Notwithstanding CABS claims, enforcement operations against illegal trapping are ongoing, and yield results. Since the enforcement update that drew CABS’s ire was provided to EU IMPEL network last week, WBRU has successfully carried out further monitoring operations, which resulted in two more illegal trapping sites being located and dismantled last Sunday 26th March, and apprehending and pressing of charges against two further suspects. Sunday’s operation comes in the wake of another successful operation last Friday 24th March in Gozo, which also led to apprehension and prosecution of poachers, bringing the total number of illegal sites dismantled over the past two weeks to 25, the number of live birds seized to over 30, and the number of persons facing criminal action to five.

Source: Government of Malta