Everything we have experienced, achieved and struggled for in 2021
A year with a lot of radicak Actions, full of Information, Education, Actions, Fronts, Judicial Struggles, Law-Making struggles, Struggles against the hard everyday life of animals, Seminars, Congresses, Meetings, Lectures, Discussions with the Authorities. Through our successful or failed actions we tried to give a voice to non-human animals. We have made efforts towards a Different Human, a Different Attitude to Life, Veganism.
PFPO is an organization that was created to offer new directions in the animal welfare movement in our country, for all kinds of animals. We continue, looking at the future, combining experience and knowledge with enthusiasm, new facts, activism, assertiveness, reasonable and emotional approaches.
New members, new partners, new advisors, new co-operations, a large number of new organizations, have made the work of PFPO increasingly important.
Through our intervention we have achieved a great deal.
We have stopped actions against animals, we have informed or accused Municipal Authorities (some of them were taken to court), we helped hundreds of citizens who had problems and did not know what to do, we contributed to changing the animal welfare status in our country, we worked more closely with the police, we made contacts with some ministries, we tried to eliminate any fears and superstitions about animals etc.
The Panhellenic Animal Welfare and Environmental Federation has established itself as a group that actively fights to change ways of thinking, with the help of scientific knowledge, making a big change in the matter of animal welfare in our country.
Let us remember some of the greatest moments and actions, from October 2020, when the new administrative council of the PFPO was elected, until the present day, as it’s not possible to record every detail of our activity and every single thing that has to be done.
October 2020 – December 2021
The vision of the Administrative Council of the PFPO
Some words about our goals
The members of the Administrative Council (ordinary or temporary) have respect for each other and share common values and ideas regarding animal rights and welfare, without identifying themselves with particular political parties. The vision of our Federation is to work more intensively against animal exploitation, drawing lessons from our successful activity over the years.
We want to include more groups and organizations, animal friends and animal rights activists.
Our press release:
Our new, updated website www.pfpo.gr
Voluntary work on so many fronts:
Fur production and breeding of fur animals
Our activity in this field was more intensive than ever – Through articles, announcements, demonstrations, informing political parties, complaints to the competent authorities, legal actions, cooperation with other organizations, contacts with ministries, argument and research we have built a front against fur production. Our successful activity has annoyed fur traders and the Fur Federation. We have been successful at making people understand that it is essential to close fur facilities, among else for environmental reasons and public health concerns (minks can transmit the coronavirus to humans). In 2022 we plan to put pressure on law makers, in order to stop the plight of those animals, like in other EU countries.
Some of our actions εδώ
Education and Information
Education can make a big difference.
More than 100.000 pupils have taken part in our education projects, as well as hundreds of volunteers and teachers.
Our educational resources on animals and the environment have been adopted by the Ministry of Education and are included in the Skills Laboratory Platform of the Ministry.
The PFPO has set a landmark by officially supporting the first Postgraduate Studies Programme of the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Athens on Animal Ethics.
Our actions include seminars, lectures, cooperation with ministries and the police (for the education of pupils, policemen and employees), online or real life events for schools, cooperation with positive trainers etc.
The Panhellenic Animal Welfare and Environmental Federation (PFPO) and the Hellenic Association for the Promotion of Rhetoric in Education,
with the support of the european programme “Climate of Change”-ActionAid Hellas co-organized a Public Debate on the following subject:
“Is it acceptable for humans to exploit animals?”
Renowned university professors Vaggelis Protopapadakis (UOA) and ο Giorgos Arsenos (the Veterinary Medicine Department of the University of Thessaloniki) give their opinions on the tragedy of the bull festival of Lesvos, but politicians think that if they stop this tragedy they will lose their voters.
The law advisors of the PFPO have organized seminars for the Hellenic Police employees in many parts of the country in 2020 and 2021, meetings with the Police Lieutenant General regarding various matters, always with well-grounded suggestions. We make complaints to the Police Headquarters about policemen who ignore animal welfare legislation, with satisfactory results.
Promoting veganism as a new way of life
Veganism is a way of life which tries to stop all kinds exploitation and brutality against animals. It is against any form of violence. It is a philosophy and way of life that promotes the development of alternative methods in the interest of humans, animals and the environment. Regarding food, veganism emphasizes on products based on animals.
We have organized an online Congress on Veganism as a different way of life, with the participation of speakers from Greece and abroad. This was a very important moment for us.
Another important moment was our participation for the first time (with our own stand) in the vegan life festival in October 2021.
Articles on veganism:
The dark truth of milk production industry
Protection of wild life and biodiversity
We have taken initiative for the creation of the PanHellenic Network for the Protection of Wildlife SaveWild – The Network, consisting of 7 Organizations and personalities, intends to work with other environmental organizations, to make the protection of nature and wildlife more effective. Our activity in this front has been overwhelming.
We have also contacted the Ministry of Environment (about illegal hunting and exotic animals) in Kythnos and elsewhere. We have taken action against the killing and abuse of animals and made reports to prevent suspending hunting prohibition during quarantine periods. We have sent letters to Greek members of the European Parliament, for banning lead bullets in wetlands.
Special action has been taken also against hawk hunting, with various interventions, judicial or extrajudicial, and will be continued in the future with the same force and decisiveness.
After the destructive fire forests of the summer we have undertaken a successful campaign to make the Forest Authorities stop the wild boar hunting in north Attica.
Some links about our actions:
Dolphin Aquarium and Attica Zoological Park
The 13rd of March 2021 was a historic day for the animal welfare movement in Greece and in Europe, as the Dolphin Aquarium finally closed, after many years of struggles.
The PFPO greatly contributed to this. The pool of the aquarium did not meet the construction standards and had received a punishment of 1.588.000 euro along with other final decisions of the court.
Other organizations in Greece and abroad also worked towards this goal.
Some of the most important actions and interventions of the PFPO.
- Our letter of 09/05/18 to the Ministry of Environment.
- Our letter of 28/05 /2019 to the Body of Public Administration Supervisors about: Final judicial decision not applied by the Municipality of Spata.
- We have made an appeal to the Council of State against the illegal license of the Aquarium.
For years the PFPO has advised teachers and pupils not to visit places were animals are prisoners, as this is animal abuse. In 2017 we have also sent a letter to the Ministry of Education and the local education offices, advising against visiting the Zoological Park of Attica.
We have also held meetings with representatives of the Hellenic Ministry of Marine Affairs about the Aquarium and the exploitation and reproduction of sea mammals.
Production animals are “invisible”. They are born in to be killed to make food. Fur animals are killed to make coats and animal testing also kills animals to make medicines. Animals should be allowed to live instead of being tortured and killed.
Our activity has focused on two fronts: The right of animals to live well and die a natural death (veganism).
Our actions are described below.
One of our most important moments was the decision of the Council of State (following our appeals), prohibiting slaughter without anaesthesia.
We also sent a letter to the Prime Minister and the competent ministers in order to avoid a new ministerial decision on the same matter. We have also taken action against “cultural” festivals of animal abuse and against pig castration (according to EU regulation). We have participated in television programmes to protest against animal “hobblying” (tying legs together).
The PFPO has also taken part in EU – level struggles to ban cages (contacts with Greek members of the European Parliament).
Animals have the right to live and this is why we promote veganism.
Horses and donkeys: Santorini donkeys and horse carriages
The plight of these animals is not so well known but the PFPO has not forgotten them in 20-21 .
These animals work hard like slaves in many parts of Greece like Aegina, Chania, Santorini, Idra, Spetses, Nafplio and Corfu. People sometimes ignore that this is cruelty. In Santorini donkeys are used as taxis. Horse races are one more form of cruelty to animals. According to the law, horses and donkeys have to be „micro-chipped“. It is also made illegal to export horses to be slaughtered for their meat, skin or for the production of medicines.
The PFPO has received complaints about the abuse of horses and donkey in Aegina, Chania, Patras etc. However, the authorities (Ministry of Culture) did not show any interest in the donkeys of Santorini and the horse carriages.
Last summer we contacted the Ministry of culture in order for carriage horses working less hours or not working at all during hot months. We also made complaints against the transport of live animals with ships during hot weather.
We are looking forward to the introduction of obligatory micro-chips and the new legislation regulating everything about horses, donkeys etc, which has delayed too much.
Events, co-operations and actions about other animals
In the times of covid19 we had few opportunities to organize events.
However we were able to organize some very important ones.
A wonderful Mucic and Theatre performance Pedio toy Areos (Dog in the Street), in cooperation with the local Regional Government.
“Human love and stop the fire”
In Rhodos the concert with Vaggelis Koutsouros was exciting and emotional, and money was raised for the forest fires animals. We felt as if we were also there.
Students of the 2nd secondary school of Chania were given a prize for making a special robot to provide stray animals with food and water (an initiative of The PFPO, in cooperation with the Lawyer’s Association).
The PFPO also worked with Royal Canin and the company Hellenic Market to feed animals during the quarantine and the massive forest fires last summer.
Caretta Caretta turtles, magicians’ rabbits and fireworks
Mikis Theodorakis’, the great Greek composer, died this year. Mikis Theodorakis has said some very important words regarding humans’ behavior towards animals. We will never forget him.
Mikis Theodorakis was a universal personality. The PFPO often expresses opinions on social matters.
The QUARANTINE period, and our activity to help animals during the lock-downs.
The PFPO has given fights to relieve stray animals, which were exhausted and hungry, as well as pets, when it was not allowed to travel from one place to another.
During the quarantine animals and especially birds were starving to death and were easy targets for hunters. We therefore gave fights against hunting. However political parties didn’t support our struggles to stop hunting, as they did not want to displease their voters.
In cooperation with best professors of Virology and Immunology we have informed the public of mass media tha animals do not transmit the coronavirus to humans. This was very important, as animals would be abandoned otherwise.
We have sent letter to municipal authorities to help animals, we have helped them organize their activities and offered tonnes of food, in cooperation with big companies and other volunteers. A small account of our actions.
The law 4830/21 allowing the use of animals in shows, for example the show with an eagle in the AEK football ground, is a WINDOW WHICH MUST CLOSE
Environment and Climatic Change
We have taken important initiative during the past two years. We have taken part in a cooperation between Greece, Turkey and Cyprus, in order to stop oil mining in sea, which is destructive for the environment.
The destructive forest fires last summer
Last summer massive forest fires burnt large areas of land, forests, animals and houses.
Along with thousands of volunteers, we struggled during those extremely difficult days, to raise money for the animals that were affected by the catastrophe. We did everything to help animals and to co-ordinate the work of the volunteers, from Evia, Attica, Peloponnese. We promised to do everything possible for the punishment of those who were responsible for the torturous death of thousands of animals.
Meetings with the authorities and political parties
During the hard times of the coronavirus we were able to organize online and recently also in real-life with ministries (ministry of culture, ministry of internal affairs, ministry of environment) and parties (syriza and mera25). We also held meetings with the Hellenic Police and questions in the Parliament aboyt the Municipality of Messolongi, the show of AEK and the hawk – hunting etc.
Companion animals and stray animals
Last but not least, we were left with mixed feelings about the new law regarding companion animals.
The bill that became a new law does not solve any problems and makes the situation worse, as it introduces ideas that are not ethical, like imprisoning animals in dog shelters, with a decision of the municipal authorities, without the veto the 5 – member committee had until now. The only positive moment of the previous year was that now animal abuse and killing is treated by Justice as a crime.
Some examples of our actions:
Municipalities and their often criminal behavior against animal,
Municipal dog shelters, which will continue to be places of animal abuse,
Our complaints against animal abuse,
A lot of court cases of animal abuse where the PFPO against illegal breeders, dog “trainers”, a large number of online meetings and events with municipal authorities, associations and volunteers,
press releases and letters to the government, justice, police,and police headquarters about the behavior of policemen,
help to associations and volunteers about the problems in their towns (for example prosecution in court).
Unfortunately, despite our struggles, the new bill was finally voted.
The pfpo has given fights against dog fights
Dog fights happen all the time but no-one talks about this mafia. The PFPO has collected signatures of people of arts and letters, gave interviews and have even made appeals to the Supreme Court.
Of course, dog fights still take place, as they bring great profit, at the expense of animals.
It has been a continuous fight but it is impossible to write every detail about it.
Our plans for the next two years
We believe that the animal welfare movement in Greece has reached a turning point and faces new challenges. Everybody, including the PFPO, have to focus on reaching their goals: Animal rights, protection of animals, veganism as a different way of life.
For more information: