News / Europe

Uproar Over Stray Dogs Mars Olympic Preparations

A stray dog walks past the Olympic Rings in Olympic Park, three days before the start of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 3, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.
A stray dog walks past the Olympic Rings in Olympic Park, three days before the start of the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 3, 2014, in Sochi, Russia.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— An outcry over the fate of stray animals being rounded up in Sochi is the latest problem to dog Russia's preparations for the Winter Olympics.

Already scrambling to get hotels ready on time, make the Games safe and convince the world Russians are not homophobic, the host nation is now trying to shake off accusations that it is killing stray dogs.

It is hardly the showcase for modern Russia that President Vladimir Putin had hoped for at the Olympics.

Residents say thousands of dogs have disappeared from the streets of Sochi since a local business won a contract to catch stray animals before the Games, which open on Friday.

Although some can still be seen wandering the streets, including close to some of the sports venues, reporters and local residents say there have been fewer each day.

Olympics volunteers sit near two stray dogs outside the Gorki media center in Krasnaya Polyana near Sochi, Russia, Jan. 30, 2014.Olympics volunteers sit near two stray dogs outside the Gorki media center in Krasnaya Polyana near Sochi, Russia, Jan. 30, 2014.
x
Olympics volunteers sit near two stray dogs outside the Gorki media center in Krasnaya Polyana near Sochi, Russia, Jan. 30, 2014.
Olympics volunteers sit near two stray dogs outside the Gorki media center in Krasnaya Polyana near Sochi, Russia, Jan. 30, 2014.
The Games organizers are reluctant to discuss the dogs' fate, particularly whether they have been culled.

"There is a service that catches the dogs and the city authorities handle this. The city has a special shelter for them," said Alexandra Kosterina, a Games spokeswoman.

The city authorities did not immediately comment but the Basya Services pest control company said it had received a contract to catch and destroy the wild dogs roaming the Black Sea resort.

Residents say many of the dogs on the loose had been kept as pets or guard dogs by foreign workers who helped build the Games venues but have now returned home. Some of the dogs, they say, have been found dead in the streets.

Tatyana Leshchenko, an animal activist, told local media: "The city authorities are paying for the murder of each animal but this does not solve the problem. This money should be provided for sterilizing animals and building shelters."

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid