Animals Exported From EU In Extremely Abusive Conditions Revealed In New Report

The conditions in which live animals are being exported from the European Union (EU) are appalling, abusive and torturous, according to a recent investigation by Animals International; which sadly but accurately described the treatment as extremely inhumane.

Some of the unfathomable abuses documented in the staggering report include bulls who are fully conscious “hoisted to the ceiling by one rear leg” in Turkish slaughterhouses; the use of electric prods to load animals at EU harbors; restrained bulls having their throats hacked; and animals completely covered in excrement being unloaded in Turkey.

The horrific accounts are especially disturbing because the EU does have some stringent guidelines on how animals can be exported, such as the rule that authorities must be able to guarantee that EU standards will be met in the end country’s port, in an effort to ensure the animals will not face welfare abuses once they reach their final destination.

“This investigation reveals an abject failure by EU officials to monitor live animal export,” stated Animals International EU Director Gabriel Paun. “Animals raised in European care are being transported in manners that are in breach of EU regulations and they are enduring horrific slaughter practices in breach of international agreements. EU farmers and the general community will be mortified to see how the animals raised in European care are being treated.”

Protesters contend that the disturbing and questionable practices are not only extremely and unnecessarily harmful to the animals and rife with abuse, they are also dangerous to food safety.

An exposé, published by The Guardian about the Animals International eight month operation, revealed that “dozens of undercover videos and photographs obtained by the Guardian show live cattle and sheep from EU countries being beaten, shocked with electric prods, held for days in overcrowded pens and covered head to toe in feces as they are transported from Europe to their final destinations in Turkey and the Middle East in conditions that breach European law.”

It further explained that once at their destination, some of the animals are slaughtered in appalling conditions and shows footage of “cattle and sheep from France, Romania and Lithuania kicking and flailing violently as their throats are crudely cut or sawed at repeatedly, often in crowded street markets and run-down abattoirs.”

Animal welfare groups are advocating for more stringent applications of existing law to further ensure that animal slaughter conditions as well as transport conditions meet EU standards.

Additional critical reforms they are pursuing include the institution of a unified regulatory set of standards enforcement that ensures animal welfare is non-negotiable and easily tracked and document as well as mandatory reporting of illnesses, injuries or deaths animals sustain while being transported.

Source: The Guardian, Care 2
Photo Credits: Care 2, Mirror, The Guardian, Animals International

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