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Mayor of Bologna calls out Seongam for accountability regarding illegal Dog Meat trade

Below is translation of Ms. Federica Salsi, Council member of City of Bologna, Italy, blog post on April 14 updating her effort in support of our campaign: Friendship City Campaign – Seongnam, South Korea – Bologna, Italy Click HERE to see her blog in Italian.

Some time ago, an announcement on Twitter informed me of the terrible mistreatment of animals, especially dogs in Korea. As Mayor Merola of Bologna had just signed an agreement with the Korean Mayor of the City of Seongnam, I asked him to promote a rising awareness and concern for the respect of animals.

The first response (from Seongnam) was disarming: “At the moment there are no specific actions.”

Meanwhile, an online petition had begun collecting thousands of signatures in just a few days, and the image of Bologna did not fare well from this situation. So I decided to re-consult the Mayor thinking that perhaps he was underestimating the defaming situation that the image of Bologna was being exposed to.

Within two months we received a reply from Mayor Merola (evidently the continuous spreading of this fact on social networks has worried him… and the electoral campaign sounds great for that!).

He informed me that he had written a letter to the Korean Mayor “to bring to his attention the theme of the mistreatment of dogs and cats for its own jurisdiction.” I have asked to be updated on a possible answer.

Following is the full text of my interpellation and the Mayors answer.

Federica Salsi’s Interpellation:

– Given that:
Monday, November 16, 2015, the Mayor of Bologna Virginio Merola and the Mayor Lee Jae-Myeong of Seongnam, Republic of Korea, signed a cooperation agreement to promote an effective exchange of economic projects, cultural and technological, both in public and private sectors;

– Also said that:
I submitted an interpellation on 30/11/2015 n. 380043/2015, Prog. n. 119/2015, to ask to the Mayor if he meant, in the context of the protocol signed with the Mayor Jae-Myeong Lee Seongnam, Republic of Korea, to promote an effective exchange of cultural projects, to promote also activities, awareness and information about the care of animals, especially dogs and cats.

In response to the above interpellation, the Deputy Mayor Rizzo Nervo stated that “At the moment there are no specific actions”;

Whereas:
January 13, 2016 the Koreandog Association (https://koreandogs.org/) launched a petition (https://www.change.org/p/bologna-italy-mayor-virginio-merola-tell-friendship-city-seongnam-south-korea-that-we-re-opposed-to-the-torture-and-consumption-of-dogs-and-cats) to ask to the Mayor of Bologna, Virginio Merola, to tell City Partner Seongnam, South Korea, his opposition to torture and consumption of dogs and cats.

This petition in only two days has raised almost three thousand signatures from supporters around the world; Mayor, Aldermen and Councillors are receiving numerous emails to sensitize Mayor Merola.

I asked:
– To consider that an agreement on cooperation and friendship with a country, where dogs and cats are routinely tortured and killed, may harm the touristic and commercial image of Bologna.

– To consider that the administration should take a clear stance against the torture of dogs and cats in Korea urging about that to the Seongnam Mayor.

LETTER OF THE MAYOR MEROLA – ANSWEAR TO FEDERICA SALSI:

April 1, 2016

Dear Counselor,

I wrote to the Mayor of Seongnam to inform him about the mistreatment of dogs and cats in his territory. Reminding him our protocol of cooperation signed the last autumn, about economy, culture, and education. I informed him about the international petition change.org that shows the routine tortures of dogs and cats for human consumption, in particular what happens inside the Moran Market, in the City of Seongnam.

So I asked to know his position about that, highlighting that in Korea there is an animal protection law (approved in the 1991, modified in the 2008) and that the law absolutely prohibits the maltreatment of the animals. My hope expressed to the Mayor of Seongnam is that our collaboration and cooperation won’t be damaged by the international concern for these animals.

Virginio Merola

Letter from Mayor Merola to Ms. Federica Salsi on April 1, 2016

Letter from Mayor Merola to Ms. Federica Salsi on April 1, 2016

  1. stella maris argento
    stella maris argentoApril 16,16

    grazie di cuore Federica e Alcalde Merola !!!!!!!!!

    • DESIREE SCHEEPERS
      DESIREE SCHEEPERSApril 17,16

      ONE LEADER WHO HAS HAD THE BACKBONE TO MAKE A STAND AGAINST THIS UNGODLY EVIL, GOD WILL NOT BE MOCKED WHAT MAN SOWS MAN IS GOING TO REAP, JUDGEMENT FOR ALL EVIL WILL COME TO ALL.
      MORE LEADERS NEED TO COME FORWARD AND MAKE A STAND AGAINST THIS WICKED EVIL THAT IS INFLICTED AGAINST A PURE CREATION OF GOD. WELL DONE TO THIS LADY LETS KEEP FIGHTING THIS DEMONISM

  2. Cornelia Dragon
    Cornelia DragonApril 16,16

    Thank you Ms. Federica Salsi for not giving up and fighting for this horrible Animal abuse. You got all my Respect. I will keep share and signd all Petitions there is. We all need to keep on fighting to stop this Torture! Regards From Connie Germany

  3. Ingela Hammar Wallentin
    Ingela Hammar WallentinApril 16,16

    Please dont allow cruelty to animals

  4. sharron
    sharronApril 16,16

    Thank you thank you thank you….. for your continual help and support in working hard to stop this horrific trade…. so very grateful…..Not many listen or act on stopping this evil…. it gives us all hope that more people in power will follow suite……

  5. Judith Carr
    Judith CarrApril 16,16

    This is good news indeed. The mountain is still steep and we need to push harder than ever now. My whole mission in life is to exose this barbaric sick cruel trade. This is a great place to start and it has to start there or somewhere, but there are so many countries like Indonesia, The Philippines , Vietnam, Thailand that need their sister cities need to step up because this is unacceptable in the eyes of the international community and pet lovers all over the world thank you Mayor of Bologna for your efforts. This has to stop. I will never stop being a visibal loud mouth advocate and speaking up for the voiceless.

  6. Jan Jorczak
    Jan JorczakApril 16,16

    Mayor Merola, Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sending your letter to the Mayor of Seongnam to encourage him to uphold the law and shut down the infamous Moran Market, where unimaginable dog and cat torture is routine and hundreds of thousands of these innocent animals suffer to become food. This is truly hell on earth and I again thank you for taking a stand. Along with all our petitions, I’m sure your letter will hold a lot of weight. Best Regards from South Windsor, CT. USA

  7. Jan Jorczak
    Jan JorczakApril 16,16

    Ms Salsi, Thank you so much for your perseverance and the resulting victory for these suffering dogs and cats. The fight continues and we are all in this together until there is no more dog and cat consumption in S Korea. Thank you again from S Windsor, CT. USA

  8. Jan Jorczak
    Jan JorczakApril 16,16

    I meant to say the victory encouraging Mayor Merola to send his letter to tha mayor of. Seongnam. Success

  9. Connie Zumbo
    Connie ZumboApril 16,16

    Grazie Mille Frederica sei un Angelo!!! ???

  10. Robyne Zuendel
    Robyne ZuendelApril 16,16

    Thsnk you for caring about poor defenseless dogs

  11. Mary Ann Fusco
    Mary Ann FuscoApril 17,16

    This is such great news to hear this from you and your country so thank you so much for your compassion and attention to these horrors. Many of us stand by Nami Kim, Soi Dog and Marc Ching from The Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation who I urge you to check his Facebook page. He has been to Asia a few times and as recently as a few months ago and is there now once again documenting the horrors and hopefully saving some dogs and just maybe some day our government will do something about it to aid in stopping it. Awareness is key but sharing and posting is most important. A heartfelt thank you from NYC.

  12. Angela
    AngelaApril 17,16

    Thankyou to the city of Bologna especially Ms Salsi and the Mayor- it is wonderful that the Mayor has corresponded with Seongnam’s Mayor.

  13. Sandra Bywater-Hoather
    Sandra Bywater-HoatherApril 17,16

    Thank you Ms Salsi and Mayor Merola for taking action and not ignoring the plight of these poor dogs. It is much appreciated

  14. demi abbott
    demi abbottApril 30,16

    Thank you so much and from the bottom of my heart for what you have done. Please keep helping them with us. We can’t do it without you. Please never give up. You have a wonderful soul. I will never give up and I sign everything for them I get sent. Thank you again.

  15. Diane Smith
    Diane SmithMay 1,16

    It is a gruesome, barbaric action to deliberately torture these poor dogs and cats. Millions of us are appalled by videos we view of these cruel, inhuman acts against God’s small creatures. The concept presented for justifying the torture is that it is supposed to make for better eating! Most of the modern world believes it is for satisfying the evil pleasure these captors get.
    Thank you Bolognan , Italy officials for bringing up the subject with Seongnam city officials. Hopefully some laws will be enforced.. There are millions of us who will be watching – literally. Anyone who has viewed these grotesgue , inhumane videos will want to work to change this backward culture. Watching this will take a major effort of courage. It will turn your stomach. Most wont view this extreme cruelty to these helpless creatures.
    Grazie Italy, from California, USA.

  16. L Green
    L GreenMay 4,16

    Thank you for speaking up for these helpless little creatures. The measure of a society is how it treats it’s most helpless.

    Thank you!

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