French hunting law back on track

Deputies reject Senate's major amendments, reintroduce stricter limits on bird shooting

French environment minister Dominique Voynet's contentious new hunting law has once again been backed by the lower parliamentary house, the national assembly. Deputies last night rejected sweeping amendments introduced last month by the upper house, the senate (ENDS Daily 29 May).

As proposed by the government, the law is aimed at bringing France into line with EU law by imposing tougher limits on the length of the hunting season and banning the killing of migratory birds during their breeding and migration seasons.

In its first reading vote, the senate had threatened to cause chaos by rejecting most of the main elements of the law, including a shortening of bird hunting seasons which have landed France in the European Court of Justice (ENDS Daily 3 December 1998).

The law will go back to the senate late next week, before returning to the national assembly for a final reading. The government is reported to be desperate to finalise the law before July, when France takes over the rotating six-month EU presidency.

Follow Up:
French national assembly, tel: +33 1 40 63 60 00; French environment ministry, tel: +33 1 42 19 20 21.

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