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article image'Transfer’ a common proposal to all Israel’s problems? Even cats?

By Lesley Lanir     Nov 4, 2015 in World
Tel Aviv - An Israeli minister causes outrage and draws ridicule by suggesting a "cat transfer" over sterilization as a solution to Israel’s ever growing street cat "problem."
With everything that is happening in the Middle East at the moment you would not expect to read a news story on a proposal for a "cat transfer" or expect to read about such things discussed in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset. However, earlier this week, Uri Ariel, the Minister for Agriculture for the Israeli government did just that — he proposed a "cat transfer."
Israel has a lot of street cat; an approximation of a couple of million has been given. On Monday, in an attempt to find a solution for this cat population boom, Ariel — from the religious Habayit Hayehudi party — suggested transferring thousands of street cats of the same sex to anywhere that would have them. Why did the minister make such a proposal? Because religious Jewish law does not allow cruelty to animals, therefore, sterilization is out of the question and because the command from god was "go forth and multiply." Neutering and spaying do not quite fit into those requirements.
After Ariel’s proposal, based on his religious beliefs, brought about outrage and ridicule, the Minister backtracked and reallocated the annual budget of 4.5 million Israeli shekels for spaying and neutering cats to research instead of a cat transfer. This means the state will not be transferring cats this year to some other nation to deal with to avoid neutering and spaying, but neither will it be transferring any money to cope with the costs of cat sterilization. Minister Ariel may have a clear conscience but local authorities dealing with an ever growing cat population due to an already allegedly inadequate budget will be faced with dealing with the kitty problem without any budget at all.
More about Israel, Cats, jewish law, sterilisation, Uri Ariel
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