Contrary to what FKNK is stating, there was unanimous agreement at Ornis in favour of the setting up of a Wildlife Crime Unit

September 1, 2018 4:15 pm

At the Ornis Committee meeting held on 22nd August 2018, all committee members, including FKNK representatives, unanimously agreed on the setting up of a Wildlife Crime Unit within the Malta Police Force

A letter has already been sent by WBRU and the Ornis Committee Chairman to Parliamentary Secretary Clint Camilleri in this regard

FKNK compelled to do a u-turn after bowing to pressure from its members who do not want better enforcement. The Federation has lost control of its members and all credibility

In reaction to the latest press release issued today by the Federation of Hunters, Trappers and Conservationists (FKNK), BirdLife Malta wants to make it clear that following interventions by Inspector Sheldon who leads the Administrative Law Enforcement (ALE) section of the police and Superintendent Curmi from the Gozo District, who were both invited to the Ornis Committee meeting of Wednesday 22nd August, the Chairman requested the approval of all members to inform the Environment Ministry on the need to set up a Wildlife Crime Unit as part of the Malta Police Force.

Contrary to what the FKNK is stating, all the Committee members, including the FKNK representatives themselves, unanimously agreed with this and in fact the letter has already been sent to Parliamentary Secretary Clint Camilleri.

BirdLife Malta insists that this u-turn by FKNK is the result of complaints by a substantial number of its members who are angry that Federation agreed to the setting up of a Wildlife Crime Unit. This clearly shows that the officials of the Federation have lost all control on the organisation which has been taken over by a group of members who are against better enforcement, contrary to what the general public, including law-abiding hunters, want.

Only those who want to continue breaking the law and shooting down protected birds stand to benefit if enforcement is not strengthened with a Wildlife Crime Unit. With the position adopted by FKNK, which is similar to the hunting lobby’s statement that the European Union is solely to blame for the illegal killing of the White Storks, the Federation has now lost all credibility both on a national and international level. FKNK has also lost all control of its members and is showing that it is not capable of standing strong by the principles of controlling illegal hunting.

In these circumstances BirdLife Malta reiterates its call on the Government to suspend the hunting season until 15th October and start planning the setting up of a Wildlife Crime Unit as soon as possible.

Despite this call made earlier this week, which was supported by Malta’s main eNGO’s, the autumn hunting season opened today and will remain open till the 31st of January 2019.

Read the Maltese version of the press release here.