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Activists Outraged Over Inhumane Killings

January 2008

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico � Activists in Puerto Rico who were outraged by the massacre of dozens of dogs hurled from a bridge last year say the government has been slow to deliver on promised measures to protect stray animals from abuse and abandonment.

In response to an outcry over allegations of inhumane killings, the government pledged in December to build shelters and create animal protection units inside the police. Authorities say they are making progress despite bureaucratic obstacles.

But advocates say that dogs are still being abandoned in large numbers, some of them starving or battered, on the streets and beaches of this U.S. Caribbean territory.

"It seems to me that the situation for the animals is continuing basically the same," said Eugenio Crespo, president of the Animal Protection Federation and owner of shelters in Mayaguez and Ponce. The animals found under a bridge in October had been seized from housing projects and thrown to their deaths. An investigation by The Press later showed that such inhumane methods of killing pets and stray animals were routine, with thousands of animals brutally slain.


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