Dog killings in Bolivia

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November/December 2007:
ACHACACHI, Bolivia–“Aymara peasants loyal to President Evo
Morales, calling themselves the Red Ponchoes, yesterday beheaded
two dogs as a gruesome signal to those ‘who don’t want change’ in the
country,” a representative of the Asociacion para la Defense de los
Derechos de los Animales de Bolivia e-mailed to humane media on
November 23, 2007. “Red Ponchos secretary general Ruperto Quispe
confirmed that other peasant groups from the La Paz area
participated,” the report added.
Video of the killings reportedly hinted that Morales
himself encouraged the action.
Identified by New York Times correspondent Simon Romero as a
former organizer for the coca growers’ union, Morales in June 2007
attended a llama sacrifice.

Dolphin captures in Solomon Islands are linked to Panama, Dubai

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, July/August 2007:

GAVATU– As of July 24, 2007, Canadian dolphin broker
Christopher Porter was reportedly holding as many as 50 recently
captured dolphins in sea pens at Malaita in the Solomon Islands.
“Ocean Embassy, also known as the Wildlife International
Network, is in the Solomon Islands trying to export the dolphins to
Dubai,” Dolphin Project founder Ric O’Barry told ANIMAL PEOPLE.
Five new dolphin facilities in Dubai want dolphins, whales, polar
bears–every marine mammal they can get. Ocean Embassy is the broker.
“Somehow Ocean Embassy has been able to stay out of the media
regarding Dubai,” O’Barry added. “They brokered the deal but Porter
gets all of the attention. Ocean Embassy represents big money,”
O’Barry continued. “They dwarf Porter’s operation. The parent
corporation began selling securities via a private placement offering
in the United States in late 2003. At present, the parent company is
represented by 195 investors from the United States, Mexico, the
United Kingdom, and France.

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Dolphin captures planned in Panamanian waters

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, June 2007:
“The dolphin brokerage operation formally known as Wildlife
International Network is moving closer to capturing 80 dolphins in
Panama,” In Defense of Animals warned in a May 2, 2007 “Action
Alert,” based on findings by Panamanian activists and Dolphin
Project founder Ric O’Barry, who began exposing the operation in
“WIN is now known as Ocean Embassy,” IDA said.
“If Ocean Embassy is successful,” O’Barry told ANIMAL
PEOPLE, “they will be able to supply dolphins to just about any
place that wants them.

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Cuban animal law

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, May 2007:
HAVANA–The Scientific Veter-inary
Council of Cuba has drafted a law to guarantee
the right to life of all animals in the country,
board member María Gloria Vidal Rivalta recently
told Dora Pérez Sáez, of the Cuban newspaper
Juventud Rebelde.
“The draft is being presented to the
Ministry of Agriculture and is expected to go to
the National Assembly of People’s Power soon,”
reported Pérez Sáez.
“Legal protection for animals,
sterilization as a way of reducing the stray dog
population, and safety for wild birds are some
of the aspects to be addressed by Cuban
specialists at the 6th International Congress of
the Veterinary Sciences in Havana,” Vidal said.
Vidal also mentioned a need to address “children
who attack animals, dogfighters, people who
throw things at zoo animals, and others who keep
pets in inappropriate conditions.”

Succeeding in Galapagos, Animal Balance takes s/n to the Dominican

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, April 2007:
SAN FRANCISCO– Moving to the Dominican Republic with her
personal pets in February 2007, planning to start surgeries in
March, Animal Balance founder Emma Clifford hopes that lessons
learned in introducing dog and cat sterilization to the Galapagos
Islands off Ecuador, human population 30,000, can be applied in a
Caribbean island nation of more than nine million.
“I think we’ll be the first to do a focused spay/neuter
campaign in the Dominican,” Clifford told ANIMAL PEOPLE. “We are
targeting villages across the northern coast, starting in Cabrera.
We will work with the local vets and the national veterinary school.
As the Dominican Republic is the place for baseball,” where more
people of all ages play than anywhere else in the world, “we have
been collecting used baseball gloves, and will be giving them out as
incentives for people to get their animals sterilized, along with
the collars and leashes. St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa
has joined us and lent his name to the project to help gain
interest,” with credibility on animal issues earned as cofounder
with his wife Elaine of Tony La Russa’s Animal Foundation.

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Land reform threatens Hato Piñero

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, June 2005:

Owners of private wildlife conservancies
worldwide told themselves after the destruction
of the SAVE Valley Conservancy that the
Zimbabwean land invasions were a phenomenon
unique to Zimbabwean socio-political
That belief was shaken when the
Venezuelan National Land Institute ruled on March
12, 2005 that the 80,000-hectare Hato Piñero
ecotourism refuge and beef ranch is eligible for
seizure under a 2001 law allowing redistribution
of private land which is either under-utilized or
held under dubious title. Hato Piñero may be
expropriated even though the Branger family,
operating Hato Piñero since 1951, claims to hold
deeds to a title established in 1794.
Like Robert Mugabe, Venezuelan president
Hugo Chavez rose to power on the promise of land
reform. Like Mugabe, Chavez is bitterly opposed
by large private landowners. But unlike Mugabe,
Chavez is disfavored by the George W. Bush
administration, which backed a failed 2002 coup.

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Jailed because she spoke out for dolphins

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, May 2005:

CANCUN, Mexico–Dolphin defender Araceli
Dominguez, chair of Grupo Ecologista del Mayab
(GEMA), was released from jail without charges on
April 28, 2005, five days after she was
detained on a libel writ filed by Bernardo
Zambrano, owner of the Atlantida dolphinarium
and Parc Nizuc Wet N’ Wild swim-with-dolphins
Zambrano, son of CEMEX cement company
chair Lorenzo Zambrano, claimed Dominguez
defamed him by reporting that a dolphin recently
died at one of his facilities.
Dominguez “was released in the early
morning hours, just after a representative of
the Governor of the State of Quintana Roo went
around midnight personally to the prison,”
e-mailed Ntailan Lolkoki of Ecoterra
“Zambrano was forced to drop all criminal
charges against Dominguez [and co-defendants] Sara Rincon, head of the Association to Protect
Animals of Cancun, Cecilia Navarro from
Greenpeace Mexico, Ben White of the Animal
Welfare Institute, five local reporters, and
Yolanda Alaniz from Comarino,” the Ecoterra
announcement continued.

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Four hurricanes in six weeks stretch rescue efforts from the Caribbean islands to Texas

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, October 2004:

ORLANDO–Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne
ripped through the Caribbean, Florida, and parts of other southern
states in August and September 2004 like the Four Horsemen of the
Apocalypse, scything down whatever they met.
In between, tropical storm Alex, Bonnie, and Gaston hit hard too.
More than 3,000 people were killed in Haiti, mainly by mud slides,
and at least 31,000 people lost their homes. The magnitude of the
human disaster tended to obscure the parallel animal disaster.
“An estimated 40,000 animals, including dogs, cats, and
farm animals, are in urgent need of help,” e-mailed Anne Ostberg of
the Pegasus Foundation, who helped to fund and coordinate Caribbean
relief efforts.
“The World Society for the Protection of Animals is working
with the Argentine army and ambassador to get veterinary supples to
Haiti,” Ostberg added, “with an immediate focus on disease control
and treating surviving farm animals. WSPA is also working with two
contacts in Port au Prince.”
Ostberg said WSPA was assisting as well in Cuba, the Dominican
Republic, Venezuela, and Panama.

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Galapagos rangers win exit of pro-fishing boss

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, October 2004:


Quito, Ecuador–Ecuador environment minister Fabian
Valdivieso on September 27, 2004 appointed Galapagos National Park
biologist Victor Carrion interim park director, ending a 17-day
strike by the 300 park rangers.
Moving to placate fishers and their Ecuadoran Navy allies, Valdivieso
on September 10 touched off the strike by firing former park director
Edwin Naula.
Several international scientific and environmental
organizations froze funding to the park in anticipation of Naula’s
ouster, park spokesperson Diego Anazco told Associated Press. In
consequence, the rangers had not been paid since July.
Naula, a marine biologist, had led Galapagos National Park
staff efforts to halt sea cucumber poaching since 1997. The local
fishers responded with escalating mob violence. After the Ecuadoran
Navy failed to support the park rangers, Naula in 2000 invited the
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society to help patrol the Galapagos marine
The Sea Shepherds in 2001 “documented an admiral accepting a
bribe to release a poaching vessel in the marine reserve,” according
to Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson. The admiral lost his job. The
navy retaliated in June and August 2004 by attempting to evict the
Sea Shepherds from Ecuadoran waters.

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