Defending animals from the legal perspective is possible. How? Dr. Carlos Contreras explains it to us in his interview for “Ámbito Jurídico”


Carlos Andrés Contreras López, first Animal Law Doctor of Spain, professor and student coordinator of the only European Master in Animal Law and Society of the Autonomous University of Barcelona, has been interviewed by the prestigious Colombian legal journal “Ámbito Jurídico”. He makes a point of the Animal Law situation in Colombia.

In Colombia, the protection of animal interests is actually undertaken by the social movement. Colombian Tribunals and the State Council consider animals as part of the environment and therefore the dispositions, which are applied are those related also to all other natural resources. To this extent Dr. Contreras underlines the necessity to legally differentiate the protection of the environment and therefore of the species from the protection of the single living animal: “Animal protection has to be independent from environmental provisions”.

“What this is missing is the effectiveness of the animal protection norms existing in Colombia, since the social movement is used mainly to protect a collective right, such as the right to a clean environment.” From this statement Dr. Contreras explains that the objective of environmental disposition will not always coincide with the interest of one particular animal and for this reason it is necessary to develop Animal Law and establish a new Law field. In Colombia animals are still considered as being movable things and only the National Statute for the Protection of Animals establishes basic standards, although it has a lot of applicability problems. Nevertheless there is also a jurisprudential evolution regarding the protection of animals, which is showing a movement in its favour.

“According to me, animal welfare must be the core. The Law has to prohibit all those practices which represent unnecessary suffering or mistreatment of animals and that society does not accept anymore.”

To read the whole interview

Martina Pluda


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