PM Ciolos demanded comprehensive official reports on Sibiu bear killing

Premier Dacian Ciolos demanded officials in charge with coordinating the authorities that handled the incident in central Sibiu, when a bear wandering through the city was shot dead, to present by Monday comprehensive reports on the case, Government spokesman Liviu Iolu announced on Friday.

“Premier Dacian Ciolos discussed today with the officials in charge with coordinating the authorities involved in handling the event in Sibiu, which ended in the killing of a bear in the city. The Ministry of Interior, the Sibiu County Prefect, the Ministry of Environment, Waters and Forests, and the National Animal Health and Food Security Authority already presented the PM progress reports on the event. Premier Dacian Ciolos demanded complete reports on the situation until Monday, October 17, after the responsible institutions complete their ongoing internal investigations,” Iolu said.

According to the Government’s spokesman, PM Ciolos was informed that the Ministry of Interior has begun revising intervention procedures in the case of exceptional events.

“The Premier was also informed that, as of last week, the Interior Ministry has started revising the intervention procedures in case of exceptional events like the one in Sibiu, and the Environment Ministry will present until Thursday, October 20, the stage reached with the establishment of the Wildlife Emergency Service, which was initiated but not yet completed,” said Liviu Iolu.

The statements of the Government’s spokesman follow an incident on Wednesday, when a bear that had been scurrying along the city streets was shot dead because it posed too great a danger, the Sibiu County Police announced, mentioning that attempts to tranquilize the animal had failed.

The bear was killed after a catching action lasting several hours. Police officers, firefighters, doctors, hunters, employees of the Forestry Department, Sanitary-Veterinary Directorate (DSV), gendarmes and even the prefect of the city attended to this action.

After killing the bear, the Sibiu County Police opened a criminal investigation for using a lethal weapon. The officials from the Ministry of Environment asked the Police to investigate how the bear came into the city.


Protests in the country related to killing the bear in Sibiu


Over 100 people protested on Saturday evening in Bucharest, many of them having a teddy bear in their arms, against the decision of the authorities of Sibiu to kill the bear that walked the streets, claiming that they didn’t wish to tranquilize it and demanding clearer measures for wild animals’ protection. People in Sibiu and Cluj also went out in the street.

The protest was organized on Facebook, and on Saturday evening, shortly before 6.00 pm, over 100 people gathered in front of the National Theater, most of them having a teddy bear in their arms, with banners reading “Je suis the Little Bear”, “Justice for the Little Bear”, “Stop mistreating animals in Romania” or “Resignation, punishment of the guilty ones”.

“There should have been several attempts to tranquilize it, it shouldn’t be shot like this. The bear didn’t asked them why they cut down the trees and why they invaded its territory. (…) All those who made this mistake should be held responsible”, says Andrei, one of the attendants.

Most of the attendants demanded measures against cutting down the trees.

“We want to recall to the others who didn’t come, that forests shouldn’t be deforested anymore. Bears need a habitat, they need a home. We destroy their home so they invade cities, since they don’t have other option. (…) Their mothers are killed and the little bears are running hungry. Deforesting trees is an extreme danger, especially now, given that the climate is dramatically changing. (…) I want the guilty one to be punished, but I am particularly interested in protecting their habitat. So, stop deforesting and let’s have a little humanity in implementing laws for animals”, stated Violeta, one of the protesters.

Protesters claim that they wish to draw attention to the authorities that we need a clearer law for protecting animals in the Romanian forests.

“We are not militating only for that little bear, we are militating for all the killed animals. Each life counts. I was outraged by the way of hunting that little bear that was only scared and hungry. (…) There should be a very well settled law”, stated another women attending to the protest.

“I believe it’s also the duty of the forest districts to feed the wild animals; no animal goes down to the city to a club, to have some fun. It comes to seek food. As long as they don’t receive food in their environment, as long as they are not comfortable, we’ll always have such incidents when ironically, the animal is guilty. No, the man is the guilty one”, said another woman.

One of the organizers of the protest says that he submitted a criminal complaint right after the incident, and he will submit another complaint against the action of the Sibiu Sanitary Veterinary Directorate (DSV) incinerated the body of the bear without giving the opportunity of a counter.

“Besides the criminal complaint that I submitted right in the event’s day for illegally killing an animal, offenses to the regime of the weapons and ammunition, abuse of office, we’ll make another complaint against the DSV staff who ordered the incineration without giving us the opportunity of a counter. We should consider that the decision of a doctor from the DSV Sibiu written in an ordinary report is correct. The first criminal complaint is filed to IPJ Sibiu, and the request for a counter is filed to DSV Sibiu”, stated Cosmina Cerva from the Movement for Animals’ Protection.

The action in Bucharest comes after another over 100 people protested in Sibiu on Friday evening.


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