Save the Pyrenean bear

To save the French bear from extinction
Mr President Chirac,

Following the publication of many articles calling for the destruction of the Pyrenean bear, and following public speeches of the Ministers of Environment and Agriculture, the members of the Cyber Nature association and other protectors of nature doubt wether the political will of the French government is strong enough to protect the brown bear and contribute to its survival, despite the commitments which have been taken, several years ago, in an European framework. This species is currently on the brink of extinction. The previous reintroduction of Slovene bears showed their adaptation to Pyrenees, so that the bears are able to properly develop. Once again, we must strengthen the bears' population as soon as possible. Surveys are already been carried out, and we are still waiting for administrative authorizations.

Unlike a minority, who perfectly know how to express itself, many sheperds claim that large carnivore and men can live together. The poll of the ADET association shows that French people and a majority of Pyreneans do support new bear release.

We don't want only to keep about ten bears in our mountains (yes, mountains are also ours) so that some people can exploit the picture of the Pyrenean bear for commercial reasons. We call for urgent measures in order to ensure a viable population of bears in France, and in order to punish the poaching of large carnivores, as the law provides for it.

The French government must take firm decisions due to the extremism of some stock breeders and because the bear is in a desperate plight. We trust that our President shares our concerns over the survival of the French bear. So, concerning the fate of the bear, we ask him to take urgent actions and definitive decisions, as he proved many times that he could manage without a global consensus when the situation requires.

We undersigned, together with associations for the protection of nature, ask M. Jacques CHIRAC, President of the French Republic, to ensure the survival of the bear, as France committed itself, to penalize any illegal destruction of protected species and to hold out against political pressures which would lead to eradication of an endangered species, protected by international laws.

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