New laws abroad
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2002:
The Bulgarian Parliament on July 10 declared brown bears a
protected species, who may no longer be hunted, bought, sold, or
displayed to a paying audience. About 800 bears inhabit the
Bulgarian mountains, 30 bears are in zoos, 21 are kept by gypsy
exhibitors of “dancing bears,” 11 are in breeding colonies set up to
maintain the zoo population, and four belong to circuses, according
to the International Bear Foundation. The Dutch-based IBF in 2000
paid for microchipping all 66 captive bears, while the Fondation
Brigitte Bardot and the Austrian group Vier Pfoten founded a 2.7-acre
bear sanctuary near the Rila monastary, founded in the 13th century
at the reputed site of the grotto of the 10th century animal-loving
vegetarian saint John of Rila.
The Singapore Parliament on July 8 passed a new Animals and
Birds Bill, which increases the maximum penalty for cruelty to a
fine of $10,000 and a year in jail, and empowers the Agri-Food and
Veterinary Authority of Singapore to enter and search any premises
where cruelty is believed to have occurred. The new Animals and
Birds Bill also defines abandoning an animal as a criminal offense.
The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority and the Singapore SPCA have
been frustrated by a decade of failing to reduce shelter killing
below plateaus of about 9,000 dogs and 12,000 cats per year.