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Animal cruelty police force needed in Hong Kong, after shocking cases exposed online

YUPINA NG & LOUISE MOON: ‘In the past four years, Hong Kong has done little to make animals better off, according to activists and law experts. No animal police squad has been set up, but more cruelty cases have been exposed, mainly by social media users… Last year the government’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) received 4,318 dogs and cats – mostly strays and those whose owners had given them up… “The main problem is that we still don’t have a duty of care,” said Amanda Whitfort, an associate professor at the University of Hong Kong’s faculty of law… “If you call the SPCA, the police or AFCD, what do you think they’re going to be able to do about it? Absolutely nothing. “Until that animal shows overt signs of cruelty – being malnourished, so sick that it needs to see a vet – then there is nothing that they can do because we don’t have any requirement that animals get a minimal reasonable standard of care in Hong Kong”… Animal rights activist Mark Mak Chi-ho, an executive chairman of the non-profit Veterinary Services Society, said the police had taken a passive role in handling animal cruelty despite the rise of social media putting pressure on officers to take action… Roy Kwong Chun-yu, who holds a seat in the Legislative Council… said setting up an animal protection police squad could send a clear message to society that the force was taking cruelty cases seriously’. SOURCE…

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