War in Ukraine: GAIA deems the decision to ban refugee animals at the Ariane center “inhuman”

The decision of Fedasil and the Red Cross to close their doors to the animals of Ukrainian refugees is “inhuman“, the Gaia association (action group in the interest of animals) and the Walloon Union for Animal Protection (UWPA) protested on Friday in a press release relating to the situation in the reception center for Ariane refugees where animals are now prohibited.

The Ariane center is a temporary reception place for Ukrainian refugees before they are sent to more suitable accommodation. The animal problem arose when the stay of certain families was prolonged in this center. Families with pets have more difficulty finding accommodation in a Belgian municipality and therefore cannot leave this Fedasil centre. The absence of solutions other than prohibition is “a total denial of animal welfare” according to Aan Degreef, Managing Director of GAIA.

At the beginning of June, the Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration, Sammy Madhi called on GAIA to find a solution to this problem. Since then, animal protection associations have visited the site and proposed certain alternatives. “All these solutions offered have been brushed aside. Overnight, Fedasil and the Red Cross cut off the exchanges and refused access to the animals of the refugees, without any justification“, specifies Ann Degreef.

Fedasil understands the problem and states “be ready to explore avenues” according to the spokesperson, Benoit Mansy.

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