Montpellier: a circus with animals settles in La Mosson, the City opposes it and the controversy returns to the track

This Tuesday, August 23, the Boletti circus settled with its menagerie, including lions, in the Mosson district. An arrival that did not please the City of Montpellier.

A llama, a camel, horses but above all lions have arrived at La Mosson. While in October 2020, a wish relating to circus animals was voted by the Montpellier city council, the arrival of the Boletti circus and its menagerie did not please the City.

The director of the circus ready to defend himself

“Let them comesays Carlo Hart, director of the Boletti circus. I have a certificate of capacity, a right of opening, a certificate of professional aptitude for the transport of live animals…” For the manager, everything is in order. On the contrary, he criticizes the position of the town hall. While he is used to being refused by municipalities, this time he defends himself for not even having had a return: “We didn’t get an answer, it’s not normal.”

On this subject, and in the continuity of the wish voted in 2020, which however has no legal weight, the town hall invokes its “right to property, the fact of renting to whoever you want, explains Eddine Ariztegui, deputy mayor for animal welfare, who wants to be firm on the issue. When we receive requests to install circuses with animals on public sites, we systematically refuse them. However, the elected representative of the animalist party recognizes that “the current law allows circuses to set up on private sites, if they have the permission of the owners.”

The legality of the installation in question

Consequently, it is on private land that the circus has left its luggage. However, this installation would not be in order either. Still according to the elected official, while the circus claims to have had the agreement of Aldi to settle in the parking lot, this would be a “human error”. It would ultimately be land belonging to Nexity, which did not give its consent. As the land is still private, it is up to the real estate company to appeal to obtain the eviction.

The City has therefore found another legal ground to attack the circus: the administrative procedures concerning “security aspects” would not have been carried out. “I went to issue a prohibition order with the municipal police to tell them that they were prohibited from opening to the public.details the chosen one. We informed the prefecture.” Compliance with this decree is therefore in their hands.

Obviously, the legal threats did not have the desired effect. This Wednesday, August 24 at 6 p.m., the circus opened well. In addition, the installation, initially scheduled until August 28, is extended to September 15.

A case in the image of the frustration of the circus people

The situation is not to the taste of Franck Muller, president of the French branch of the circus union CID Europe. It provides for shock actions. First of all, “an important demonstration in the streets of Montpellier” in the coming weeks. And a second, more controversial call: “I ask circuses to set up on common land, even without permission.” The objective is clear: to impose on the cities to welcome them, and in particular until the fateful date of the prohibition of wild animals.

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