June 8, 2010
MORATORIUM IS THE FUTURE FOR CORRUPTIONISTS
or why are Black Sea dolphins not protected by law?
Olga Melnitskaya, “Center”
What is going on with the controversial issue of removing dolphins from their natural habitat and keeping them captive reminds of chaotic “molecular” movements from all imaginable types of orders, bans, and exceptions to the rules and legal loopholes.
In this “Brownian motion”, a particle named business interests causes complete confusion. As a result, similar to the theory of random processes, mathematical expectation equals zero. In terms of scientific language, this means that there is always a fly in the ointment in our country – laws adopted for the sake of saving marine mammals or supporting them, in reality, either have no force or have loopholes enabling very serious violations.
Regardless of the fact that in 2008, the Ministry of Health Protection of Ukraine issued an order prohibiting the removal of the cetacean from their natural habitat, the amount of dolphinariums keeping Black Sea bottlenose dolphins registered in the Red Book of Ukraine is only increasing. Last year, another four cities in Ukraine opened dolphinariums.
The mid-1930s to mid-1960s was the most dramatic time for the three species of the Black Sea dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, sea pig, and common dolphin). They were subject to wholesale slaughter by unrestrained fishery in the former Soviet Union, Turkey and other countries in the Black Sea basin. Even though the last 30 years (since 1983) have been better for Black Sea dolphins due to end of fishing, scientists from all over the world have agreed that endangered dolphins still need to be carefully protected. In 1994, for this reason, dolphins were added to the Red Book of Ukraine. Killing of these animals was prohibited, but not fishing them. Until 2002, dolphinariums and research and development centers had to obtain permission to catch them.
For example, in 2000, a dolphinarium in Yevpatoria, having concluded an agreement with a fish farm in Yalta, bought four bottlenose dolphins for the program of “Psychophysical dolphin assisted rehabilitation of children with development disorders.” At that time, the dolphinarium paid 2,000 hryvnyas to the state for each dolphin removed from their natural environment.
Then, many dolphinariums acquired new mammals in the following way: for instance, capturing animals was allowed for breeding and research. In 2002, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine approved new project “Morekyt” within an applied research program “Dolphin”. The project declared that four Crimean enterprises (Sevastopol private enterprise “Livadiya Dolphinarium”, Sevastopol private enterprise “Biological Station”, Karadag Dolphinarium on the basis of Karadag Nature Reserve of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, and Yevpatoria Limited Liability Company “Treatment and diagnostic center Nazareth”) with research support from “Bram Laboratory”, were to create and develop a network for monitoring emissions and by-products of catching the Black Sea dolphins. They should have designed a care system for injured cetaceans by transforming dolphinariums into rehabilitation centers for marine mammals. Active work began. Only highly trained specialists with long-term experience in dolphin research were recruited for these centers.
For example, the coast of the Crimean Peninsula was divided into zones monitored by enterprises in close vicinity to the correspondent zone. Dolphinarium staff kept track of the situation ashore: they personally inspected the coast and answered emergency phone calls from people who detected dolphins ashore. Again, the “Biological Station” and “Nazareth”, specializing in equipment and transport, aided many injured animals and let them out into the sea.
In 2003, when Ukraine ratified the international agreement ACCOBAMS, removal of cetaceans from their natural habitat became possible only to rescue or rehabilitate them.
Back then, the staff of “Nazareth” found two live bottlenose dolphins that could have died in the wild – one of them lost its eye, the other one was sick with pneumonia. Today, the rescued dolphins (Graph and Gera) live in the “Nazareth” Dolphinarium and take part in performances.
Is this a violation of the agreement ratified by Ukraine?
Theoretically, the given agreement admits and, moreover, foresees the possibility of removing injured or sick animals from their environment for treatment and further return into the wild (!). However, exactly how to return the animals into their natural habitat started to be a complicated issue. Environmental activists raised the question of capturing healthy dolphins by some centers under a suspicious excuse of rescuing them. In fact, animals were captured for profit. According to Vladimir Boreyko, director of Kyiv Ecology and Culture Center, the estimated cost of one mammal is 40,000 US dollars.
At the beginning of 2008, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine made an attempt to check existing dolphinariums. They discovered the amount of captured dolphins, and identified whether their captivation complied with permits and rules. But the results of the inspection were never published, and the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine have not responded to our information request.
Yet, as Vladimir Boreyko said, the pains taken by the Ministry were simply a mere formality with no specific findings. So, the Kyiv Ecology and Culture Center, by picketing, forced the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine to issue order #165 on March 31, 2008, which prohibited the removal of dolphins from their natural habitat for any purpose, including rehabilitation.
The decision did not sit well with the owners of dolphinariums. And the reason was obvious – their business was being threatened. It would be very reasonable to note that without developing that kind of business, actual rescue and rehabilitation programs for injured and sick animals would cease to exist. It was suggested, for instance, that project “Morekyt” would cost 400,000 hryvnyas. The executives of the project, i.e. the dolphinariums, were responsible for sources of financing. There was a paradox: the state itself was not capable of protecting its ecosystem and delegated its responsibilities to commercial structures which, in return, functioned by means of exploiting the natural resources. Therefore, the dolphinariums were to be strictly differentiated into those actually following the former program “Dolphin”, and those defending mere commercial interests.
“Putting such a division into practice is not hard at all. For example, all dolphinariums must have an environmental protection component. Then, dolphinariums will not appear out of nowhere. The draft of such a provision has been already devised and, since 2005, has laid dormant in the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine,” says Aleksandr Zhbanov, executive director of the international hydrobiotics laboratory of the International Academy of Information, Communication, Management of Ecology and Society.
But legislators have taken a different path. According to Sergey Krivokhizhyn, director of “Bram Laboratory”, Ukrainian laws contradict one another, becoming stumbling blocks for those pursuing not only profitable business, but also the humane mission of animal rescue. “If the law of Ukraine ‘On protection from cruelty to animals’ adheres to the requirements of the international ACCOBAMS agreement stating that not helping an animal in trouble is a legal violation (meaning that you do not have to get permission), then the law of Ukraine ‘On the Red Book of Ukraine’ declares that “Endangered plants and animals listed in the Red Book can be removed from their natural environment only with permission from the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine,” noted Sergey Krivokhizhyn.
“And today, when the moratorium implemented for a good cause – to decrease business with marine mammals, is in force, we cannot remove and rescue an injured dolphin from the beach, even if there are still chances for survival,” said Igor Masberg, director of the Yevpatoria dolphinarium “Nazareth”.
HOW NOT TO HARM
To understand if the moratorium was worth implementing and whose side the truth was on – either the ecologists supporting the prohibition on animal capture, or on the side of the dolphinarium staff stating that the prohibition of 2008 in no way promoted the rescue of dolphins, we addressed our inquiries to Pavel Goldin, a teacher in the zoology department of the Tavriya National University named after Vernadsky.
“The population of bottlenose dolphins in the Black Sea is unknown – supposedly, it is about 10,000 animals (according to data published in 2008 by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the population of Black Sea bottlenose dolphins is only a couple thousand animals – edit. ). These mammals are the most popular animals at dolphinariums and have a very complicated social structure. What does the number of group members depend on is a mystery as well. Bottlenose dolphins live up to 50 years, reaching puberty at the age of 10-15. Females gives birth once in three years. A definite number of animals die at any age. Around 15 mature females are in every group of 100 dolphins. If three pregnant females are removed from the school, the reproductive function of the entire school may be undercut. And this will definitely have a negative impact on the well-being of the whole population”, noted Cand. Sc. (Biology), Pavel Goldin.
That is why in the USA and Europe, where, by the way, dolphinariums are highly popular, a fixed framework for removing animals from the wild exists – only the few live dolphins cast ashore can be picked up. They have to be injured and sick and have no chance for survival in the wild.
Such restrictions are strange to our country – it is decided by eye if an animal is helpless. For instance, former director of the joint venture “Livadiya Dolphinarium” (Yalta) V. Gridin says, “Ichthyologist on speedboats chase schools of dolphins for a couple of hours. In an hour to an hour and a half, dolphins weakened by sicknesses start to lag behind. After another hour, the weakest animals are almost helpless. They are the ones that are captured.” Possibly, the weakest of all, after a chase like that are pregnant females, who experience severe stress at the same time.
The other highly ‘slippery’ moment is during return of dolphins to the sea post-rehabilitation, which is included in all programs and permits for catching them.
It appears that returning the animals is almost impossible – procedures that exist all around the world are not present in Ukraine.
“In dolphinariums, animals are fed with defrosted fish, they are fed in the air, not in the water, which is rare in the wild. In captivity, dolphins enjoy pools with little water, closed spaces, and learn to obey commands. To return an animal back to the wild, the mammal has to be broken of all those ‘habits’ and skills, which is a hard and costly task”, says Pavel Goldin.
Igor Masberg, director of Yevpatorian dolphinarium “Nazareth” proved what Pavel Goldin said, “From my experience, I can tell that after six months spent in captivity, a dolphin is unable to adjust to living in the wild, it completely ignores live fish”. The dolphinarium director insisted that returning animals to their natural environment is dangerous for other dolphins. In his 10 years of work, Igor Masberg carried out a detailed analysis that indicated features of stress in blood cytology and the biochemistry of animals kept for up to two years in captivity. During two years, the process of adaptation of the mammal is completed. However, transfers into the wild from captivity take five years. “Because of the stress, the animals suffer from pneumonia, gastric ulcers, or other diseases. Other dolphins are subject to disease-producing organisms. The mammals in dolphinariums supervised, they are vaccinated and do not infect each other, but it is uncertain what would happen if such animals are returned into a wild school. That process has not been researched yet. But it is clear that animals should be returned to the wild as soon as possible or, as in the case with Graph and Gera, conditions should be created for the dolphins as close to their natural habitat as possible”, said Igor Masberg.
“MEDICINE” FОR AN UNDESIRABLE PROBLEM
So, is today’s moratorium a cure-all? The answer could be yes, but only if all other cures proposed had been tried and none turned out to be successful.
But it is not a simple answer. The Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine avoid solving this urgent problem. In 2006, at an open meeting of project “Morekyt” executives, representatives of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources and veterinarians, the Black Sea Council on Problems of Marine Mammals suggested creating a specialized national wildlife reserve on Lake Donuzlav, which would be under supervision of LLC “Nazareth”. There, the animals would be in captivity in the conditions that echo their natural habitat, so no specific problems with returning the dolphins to the wild should arise.
Still, four years have passed and the matter has not been resolved. They could have produced a catalogue of identifying marks for dolphins in captivity, like in Russia, to keep track of each returned mammal’s future. “Yet, all these issues seem to escape the attention of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources. Lack of clarity plays into the hands of corrupt people, tempting them and showing them avenues for fraud”, commented Aleksey Birkun, head of the Black Sea Council on Problems of Marine Mammals.
Even so, the ministry limited its actions to declaring a moratorium that offered no solution to the major problem – preserving the population of dolphins. For that simple reason, when the law was intended to prohibit some actions, the chance arises to generate substantial profit by suggesting ways to avoid the restrictions. Read more on the schemes employed in our next article.
Material printed with the support of SCOOP, a network of investigative journalists in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe
June 17, 2010
“LIVE” PRODUCTS OF THE BLACK SEA
Olga Melnitskaya, “Center”
In our previous article, we focused on the loopholes in the law on environmental protection, which offers fertile ground for unrestrained exploitation of natural resources. Now, we shall discuss how, notwithstanding the declared moratorium imposed prohibition on the removal of dolphins from their natural habitat, another four dolphinariums opened in Ukrainian cities in the last year, adding the endangered bottlenose dolphins registered in the Red Book of Ukraine to their collection of mammals. The issue of the action plan, long worked out by the main Ukrainian department on the protection of natural resources, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, the scheme for obtaining marine mammals for newly created dolphinariums, shall be raised.
CERTIFICATES “FOR CATS AND DOGS”
Today, getting information on where, when and how dolphins have been purchased is utterly impossible. There is no official register of these animals. Unfortunately, the database of identifying marks of dolphins kept in dolphinariums has still not been set up. Regardless of the fact that some Crimean dolphinariums that have already been functioning for a long time rescue and rehabilitate marine mammals and keep detailed records of all their dolphins, no steps have been taken by the state in this direction.
To prove the legal basis for maintaining dolphins in captivity, we paid a visit to three Crimean dolphinariums. The directors of Yevpatoria (LLC “Treatment and diagnostic center “Nazareth”) and Sevastopol (private enterprise “Biological Station” in Artbukhta) dolphinariums produced the required papers for their bottlenose dolphins, showed the veterinary case histories and permissions for removing the mammals from their natural habitat. The dolphinarium in Yalta did not find it necessary to follow the same procedure.
At any rate, the data we acquired was sufficient to conclude that some cases of unlawful removal of mammals could have occurred.
It is known that the dorsal fin of every dolphin is distinctive. With a photo database of such identifying marks established and placed on a special website (made publicly accessible), the detection of abuses of dolphinariums, such as the illegal capture of marine mammals would be much easier. Moreover, the sum of money required for implementing this project is very modest.
Instead, veterinary passports of a very interesting standard, for “cats and dogs”, are used. The original sample of the certificate and translation of the certificate are provided below.
OWNER OF DOG/ CAT
Name ___LLC “Treatment and Diagnostic Center “Nazareth”
Address 16 A Gorky Street
Autonomous Republic of Crimea
DESCRIPTION OF DOG/CAT #03
of Dog/Cat IGMAS
Date of Birth July 3, 2000
Breed Bottlenose Dolphin
Coat Type and Distinctive Marks
Breeder’s Name and Address N/A
Place of Issue
Yevpatoria State City Hospital of Veterinary Medicine
Registration Number 20102300
Address Yevpatoria, 33 Ulyanova Street
Stamp /Stamp of Yevpatoria State City Hospital of Veterinary Medicine/
VACCINATION AGAINST RABIES
/Pictures of a Cat and Dog/
Naturally, no distinctive marks that would indicate a specific dolphin are noted on the passport.
The veterinary passport contains a very absurd, for mammals, column – “Vaccination Against Rabies”. The Committee on Natural Resources of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea audits whether dolphins maintained in dolphinariums are legal based on verifying such veterinary passports.
According to the committee, it is no wonder that everything complies with the requirements – there are seven dolphinariums functioning on the the Crimean Peninsula (two more in Sevastopol) where 27 bottlenose dolphins are maintained. All dolphinariums are provided with “miraculous” veterinary passports and permits for capturing the animals, i.e. the required permission from the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine for removing the endangered Red Book mammals from their natural environment (according to the Committee on Natural Resources of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, the last permit was issued in 2007) or documents proving the purchase of dolphins from other dolphinariums. “You cannot trust these papers. Using the “cat/dog” certificate, you can own one dolphin today that could be replaced with a different animal tomorrow, and a replacement would be unnoticed”, said Vladimir Boreyko, director of Kyiv Ecology and Culture Center, implying that permits from the ministry cannot be trusted as well.
“We have documents proving that in 2007, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine was ready to issue 30 permits for capturing sick and injured dolphins. We examined those permits approved by the Committee on the Red Book and found the names of absolutely unknown companies (without an indication of the site of registration), which were somehow urged to direct their activities toward “philanthropy”. Note that only a few dolphinariums, located exclusively in Crimea, use a scientific approach and officially rescue and rehabilitate these animals. Our center expressed indignation on this point, however, the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine did issue some of those permits”, remarked Vladimir Boreyko.
He put the major responsibility for the violations on Pavel Bolshakov, former deputy minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, who issued the permits when Vasiliy Dzharta was Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine (now he is the Prime Minister of the Autonomous Republic of the Crimea). In spite of the fact that the Committee on the Red Book of Ukraine holds meetings twice a year, on the eve of December 19, 2007 (after the head of the committee quit his position at the ministry), a special meeting was called and the issuing of permits was “verified”.
Therefore, it appears that the department chiefly responsible for protecting endangered Red Book animals from infringement, gave a “green light” to fraud. By the way, up until now the basis for those permits has been unclear. You see, the rules for sick and injured dolphins’ rescue and rehabilitation and related further commercial activity, as Vladimir Boreyko insisted, are still not approved by the ministry.
ISSUING DOCUMENTS RIGHT AND LEFT
Is the capture the dolphins taking place now, after the moratorium was implemented? If we draw a parallel between new dolphinariums opening around the country and the necessity to provide them with mammals, “yes” is the supposed answer to this question.
We telephoned four cities where new dolphinariums opened recently. For example, last year in October, representatives of Lviv National University named after Ivan Franko, State Natural History Museum of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Regular Deputy Commission on Natural Resources, Environmental Protection and Utilities of Lviv City Council addressed Yuriy Artyukhov, head of Lviv Regional State Security Service, with a request to verify the legal basis for the activity of the mobile Kobzov circus’ dolphinarium, which did not hold any permits from the city council for its location. The other party, with its own business interest in this case, was “Nerum” LLC (Odesa).
The Lviv telephone information service confirmed that the Kobzov dolphinarium still exists and offers performances every now and then. However, there was no telephone for that company.
Yet, we succeeded in calling Kharkiv, Kyiv, Donetsk dolphinariums all named “Nemo”. As it turned out, all of them, as was Kobzov, structural divisions of “Nerum” LLC. On May 30, the Kharkiv dolphinarium turned one year old; four dolphins are kept there. Although it opened last December, the Donetsk dolphinarium already has the same number of mammals.
The Kyiv dolphinarium has two dolphins; it was launched last September. We were told that all dolphins for these dolphinariums came from Odesa. Strangely enough, if we take into account that the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine officially issued its last permit to pick up sick endangered dolphins in 2007. According to that permit, three dolphins were picked up, but at that time, in captivity, there were only four bottlenose dolphins from the Sevastopol dolphinarium (private enterprise “Biological Station”), which gave birth to three dolphin. One of them was sent to the Yalta dolphinarium.
We tried to reach Sergey Kelyushka, one of the founders of “Nerum” LLC and ask how ten extra dolphins happened to be kept at subsidiaries of their company.
We inquired, “What is the source of your collection?”
The answer conveyed multiple meanings.
“The moon”, he said and slammed the receiver down.
We need to draw the reader’s attention to the fact that until 2005, “Nerum” LLC had absolutely no connection with dolphinariums or dolphins, in particular. Only by concluding an agreement to hold shares in the private enterprise “Biological Station”, did they venture into this specific business. Consequently, aside from the seven dolphins from the Sevastopol dolphinarium (by the way, the rent came due long time ago, and today court proceedings into the issue of live “possession’” is taking place) and three dolphins captured “as a result of” the permit granted by the ministry, other mammals should not have appeared.
Nevertheless, in the last year, five dolphinariums around the country (Kharkiv, Donetsk, Lviv, Kyiv and Yalta) received dolphins from “Nerum” LLC. And judging from information placed on the official dolphinarium websites, there are almost 20 marine mammals between them.
In addition, in Odesa itself, at least three dolphins are kept in captivity. So, even if we assume that these dolphins are simply being moved within the country from time to time, mathematical calculations an demonstrate obvious discrepancy between the official and actual number of animals. Apparently, either Odesa received the cherished permit from Bolshakov at the end of 2007 or, already after the moratorium, “Nerum” LLC found a way to get new dolphins.
Aleksey Birkun, head of the Black Sea Council on Problems of Marine Mammals, an international public organization, confirmed that the last supposition might correspond to reality. “The permits for removing dolphins from their natural environment should be verified by the Department of Animal Protection and Preservation of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources. A register of issued permits is kept there. When we questioned Vladimir Domashlints, head of the department, if any permits were issued after the moratorium, he answered with a firm “no”, as there was no information on the matter in the register. However, after giving the question careful thought, he said that the document might have been omitted from the official register. Like, for instance, it happened under the leadership when Vasiliy Dzharta was Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources and Pavel Bolshakov and his deputy. The former “produced” an unbelievable amount of permits under the aegis of “animal rescue and rehabilitation”, implied Aleksey Birkun.
If Birkun’s words are true, then the facts of corruption reveal themselves – ministry officials issued piles of papers to get out permits for catching dolphins before the moratorium, and when the moratorium was imposed, continued to abuse it.
Even though the permits obtained by the businessmen were aimed at removing sick and injured animals from their natural habitat, the people concerned used every chance to catch completely healthy dolphins. “In 2007, the Odesa Regional Council addressed the international public organization, the Black Sea Council on Problems of Marine Mammals, with a request to examine the dolphins maintained at the “Nemo” dolphinarium that belonged to “Nerum” LLC. Although the permits was issued to remove sick and injured animals, we found out that three healthy dolphins were kept at the dolphinarium on permits from the same ministry!” said Birkun. All these facts are proved by resolution #18 of November 27, 2007, which is at the disposal of “Center”.
Decrees of July 2 (removal of two dolphins) and of July 18 (removal of one dolphin) in 2007 allowed three dolphins to be taken from the Black Sea. At the same time, the “Decree on the Temporary Committee” of the Odesa Regional Council (#564/2007–OP of October 1, 2007) stated that only one bottlenose dolphin was maintained at the sports club at the South Operation Army Headquarters. The fact was proved by the “Resolution on Dolphin Maintenance and Feeding Conditions Audit” of October 9, 2007.
In a letter from “Nerum” LLC addressed to the Chairman of the Odesa Regional Council in October, information on treatment and rehabilitation of one “rescued” dolphin was included. However, no indication on maintenance of two other dolphins was present. Thus, we found apparent contradictions between the decrees of July 2 and July 18 and the other documents examined. The decrees stated that removal of three dolphins was carried out in July 2007, whereas, according to other resolutions, one dolphin was located to the pool in the summer, and the other two mammals were removed much later, supposedly, in the middle of autumn.
As far as the decrees on the three dolphins, having studied all the documents provided by the dolphinariums, the experts concluded that the circumstances were deliberately distorted and concealed by “Nerum”. “The decrees contained direct or implied indications that removal of the bottlenose dolphin from its natural habitat was intended for rescue, but necessity was not clear or well-reasoned in all three cases. Expert observation of the dolphins (November 5, 2007) reported of no symptoms of disease as well. External examination of the animals in the water, normal motor activity, and keen interest in the situation outside the water pool indicate clinical health”, stated the expert resolution by the Black Sea Council on Problems of Marine Mammals.
All violations were reported by the Black Sea Council to the Odesa Regional Council and the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine. “We were unable to complete our investigation on our own – due to lack of authority. Still, the information collected was enough for the Odesa Regional Council and the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine to return the case materials to the Odesa Office of Public Prosecutor for further investigation animals. But the officials dropped the case”, commented Aleksey Birkun.
Having analyzed the situation at Odesa dolphinarium “Nemo”, the researchers suggested imposing mandatory requirements on dolphinariums. The proposed requirements were sent to the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, where they are still collecting dust on shelves somewhere.
The question is - whose side are the ministry officials on? Ecologists, practitioners, lawyers or businessmen? With restraint, we assert that our investigation showed that the leaders of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, together with the Committee on the Red Book of Ukraine, are not always acting with the intention of protecting dolphins. “At present, demand for marine mammals has substantially increased, as not only dolphinariums are willing to purchase the animals. The oligarchs overcrowding our country are buying dolphins as well, for show. But can 2,000 hryvnyas paid by the dolphinariums to the state actually compensate for removing ibe dolphin, if 40,000 hryvnyas for an untrained mammal or 75,000 hryvnyas for a performing dolphin are at stake (Vladimir Boreyko insisted that this was the market price for a bottlenose dolphin – edit.)?! Generally speaking, the business interest is great. Probably that is the main reason why government officials are ignoring this issue”, said the director of the Kyiv Ecology and Culture Center.
So, what do we have in the end? The moratorium was intended for limiting business activity of “live” products. In reality, the situation is just the opposite – researchers and ecologists are banned from rescuing even mammals washed ashore, whereas illegal businesses, based captured dolphins, are becoming more and more profitable.
Material printed with the support of SCOOP, a network of investigative journalists in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe