Sixty-eight dogs, including 23 puppies, have been rescued from the basement of an apartment in Ankara's Keçiören district, the local governor's office said on Dec. 2.
The dogs, living in a state of neglect, were located upon a tip-off, the governor's office said.
The dogs were handed over to the Keçiören municipality's department of environmental protection and control.
İlimizde ihbar üzerine gerçekleştirilen denetimlerde bir binanın bodrum katında hayvanların yaşamasına elverişli olmayan koşullarda farklı cinslerde 23'ü yavru toplam 68 köpek bulunmuş 1 kişi hakkında adli ve idari işlem başlatılmıştır. https://t.co/rlkW4EO2TP pic.twitter.com/IQ5lqAWHVh— T.C. Ankara Valiliği (@AnkaraValiligi) December 2, 2020
The authorities have imposed a total administrative fine of 12,308 Turkish liras (181 liras for each dog) on one suspect in relation to the incident as per Law No. 5199, the Animal Protection Law. Also, a judicial investigation has been launched into the incident.
Turkish animal rights activists have been for years urging lawmakers to vote for a long-awaited legislation that will expand rights of animals, amid cases of violence against animals.
Officials from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) said earlier this year that a draft bill could be voted on within months, but no action has been so far taken.
The new legislation aims to respond to public outcry following a series of animal murders, with many of the perpetrators getting administrative fines only, as the Turkish law sees the abuse of animals as simply a “property violation.”