Sunday, 11 January 2015

Swedish court stops hotly-contested wolf hunt

Örebro and Värmland regions exceeded their powers by issuing hunting permits for species protected by EU nature legislation, court rules
Friday 9 January 2015 11.09 GMT

A Swedish court has pulled the plug on a wolf hunt due to start Friday, favouring animal rights activists in one of the country’s most hotly disputed environmental issues.

Sweden resumed wolf hunting in 2010 and 2011, which led the European commission to protest the country’s policy of hunting quotas.

Since then environmental advocates have been successful in fighting the government’s decisions to allow culling.

A lower court agreed on Thursday with wildlife activists that the regions of Örebro and Värmland had exceeded their powers by issuing hunting permits for species protected by European nature legislation.

“We are satisfied, but it is sad that we still have to go to court to ask for application of the law,” Tom Arnbom, a wildlife specialist at WWF Sweden, one of the plaintiffs in the western town of Karlstad’s administrative court, told AFP.

Wolf hunting is a sensitive issue in Sweden, as in other European countries where the carnivore was reintroduced in recent decades.

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