“Humanitarian organisations worldwide should collaborate in setting up an international court to judge cases of animal cruelty and specifically to assess the culpability of governments”, says Oxford ethicist Professor Andrew Linzey, Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics.
“Individuals and groups should be able to bring cases before the court where governments have failed to take reasonable steps to prevent systematic and widespread occurrence of cruelty to animals. The court would consist of eminent humanitarians drawn from the legal and veterinary professions, together with ethicists, philosophers, theologians, and those accomplished in anticruelty work worldwide.”
“Although animal protection is obviously a matter of global concern, animal protectionists have sometimes been slow in recognising this fact and have contented themselves with working on an issue-by-issue, country-by-country basis. But what this approach neglects is the need for international strategies to tackle what are global problems.”
The call is made in Professor Linzey’s Introduction to The Global Guide to Animal Protection published today by the University of Illinois Press.
“Government and industries found guilty (or who fail to participate in the hearings) would be named and shamed and placed on a register. Like Amnesty International’s published list of countries that allow torture, the register would focus attention not only on the distressing fact of cruelty itself, but also on the culpability of governments and industries in justifying and supporting cruelty.
The Global Guide to Animal Protection is the result of collaboration between the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, a world-wide association of academics from all disciplines, and the University of Illinois Press. Raising awareness of human indifference and cruelty toward animals, The Global Guide includes more than 180 introductory articles that survey the extent of worldwide human exploitation of animals from a variety of perspectives.
The Global Guide to Animal Protection is published in both the UK and USA on 30 December and is available from the University of Illinois Press priced USD95 (cloth) and USD27 (paper).
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