25 April, 2008

Maltese 2008 spring hunting season banned by European Court

Maltese 2008 spring hunting season banned by European Court

Great news from south!

BirdLife International and BirdLife Malta welcomed yesterday’s decision by the European Court of Justice to issue interim measures ordering Malta not to open the 2008 spring hunting season for European Turtle-dove Streptopelia turtur and Common Quail Coturnix coturnix. This Order implies that the Court sees urgent need to prevent irreversible damage to these migratory bird species, while a final ruling on this case is pending and not expected before 2009.

In January 2008, based on a complaint by BirdLife, the European Commission took the Maltese government to Court for having allowed, every spring since the country’s accession to the EU in 2004, hunting and trapping of European Turtle-dove and Common Quail, in direct contravention of the EU Birds Directive. Malta is located on an important bird migration route in the Mediterranean. Hunting during the sensitive breeding and spring migration period is prohibited under EU law, in all Member States.

Read more from Birdlife International pages, see link above.

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