Paris is looking for a way to live peacefully with mice. Photo/REUTERS
PARIS – The Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo decided to form a committee to consider “cohabitation” between the City of Light’s two million residents and six million mice.
The news was revealed by one of the deputy mayors in a city council meeting. That means, they decided to share the city with rats and live with the rodents.
Anne Souyris, deputy mayor of Paris for public health, added that the committee would be tasked with finding a solution that was “as effective as possible” and “irresistible” for Parisians.
Critics were quick to accuse the city government of failing to take the issue seriously.
Geoffroy Boulard, head of the French capital’s 17th arrondissement, said “Anne Hidalgo’s team never disappoints.”
Boulard insisted, “Paris deserves better.” He urged the city government to devise a more ambitious plan against rat breeding in public spaces.
The remarks followed the head of the 17th arrondissement’s criticism of Hidalgo for doing little to eradicate rats in Paris, including during strikes in the French capital earlier this year, when piles of rubbish piled up across the city.
“The presence of rats on the ground is dangerous for the quality of life of Parisians,” said Boulard at the time.
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Parisian animal rights group Animaux Zoopolis, in contrast, praised the city government’s move, saying in a statement that, “Rats exist in Paris, as in all major French cities, so the question of cohabitation inevitably arises.”
The city government’s “cohabitation” plan is a stark change to the failed 2017 anti-rat strategy, which was valued at 1.7 million euros ($1.8 million).
The costly program included installing airtight bins throughout Paris and the widespread use of rat poison.