Commission rebuffed over newt protection

The European court of justice should reject a European Commission charge of UK failure to comply with the 1992 EU habitats directive, a court advisor has stated. The case arose from complaints about developments disturbing populations of the great crested newt, a protected species under the directive. The Commission has failed to show shortcomings in British rules on granting derogation licences from the directive's general requirement of strict protection for named species, the advocate general argues. A panel of judges must still issue a final ruling in the case. See opinion in case C-434/01.

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