Romania: debate over fatal stray dog attack

A fierce debate has once again broken out in Romania after a 43-year-old woman was mauled to death by stray dogs while jogging in the outskirts of Bucharest just under a fortnight ago. This is the third time in 20 years that a resident of Bucharest has been fatally injured by dogs, which have become a recurring problem because of owners abandoning their pets' offspring in the wild. The media have harsh words for the district mayor in particular.

Open/close all quotes (RO) /

The authorities knew about the danger

The mayor of the district where the attack occurred failed to do his job, concludes:

“It doesn't matter whether the dogs were strays roaming freely on the street or abandoned on various private properties. They are there and they are a danger. ... Ciprian Ciucu had the opportunity to implement all the ideas he had ten years ago [when a child was mauled to death] to solve the stray dog problem in his district. ... The danger at Lacul Morii reservoir was well known. The victim had warned about it repeatedly since last year, after being attacked by a pack of dogs there, and had made several reports to the mayor's office. So it cannot be said that the mayor's office wasn't aware of the problem.”

Krónika (RO) /

Systematic failures

The city administration is once again washing its hands of the matter, Krónika criticises:

“Shifting responsibility has become an incredibly widespread syndrome in Bucharest City Hall and at the subordinate authorities. Unfortunately, not a single person who bears responsibility has been put in handcuffs after this tragic death. ... Other tragic accidents such as fires in hospitals also occur as a result of laws and regulations not being followed. What we have here are human failures where the authorities are lenient, superficial or even corrupt.”

Revista 22 (RO) /

Unfortunate naiveté

Revista 22 responds with sarcasm:

“Who on earth encouraged her to jog around these areas dominated by organised gangs of street dogs? Wasn't there a sign warning people not to go running there anymore? ... What was the victim thinking? That after her experience last year, when she complained about the dogs to the local police and to Ciucu, the influential gentlemen at the City Hall would actually take action and eliminate the dangerous pack at Lacul Morii? How naive! It would probably have been easier for this unfortunate woman to make friends with all the street dogs in the capital than to persuade the people at the City Hall to take action. Because we know for sure that they're not dogs, but apparently they're not humans either.”