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Cyprus Internet Directory [ Animal welfare group records ‘cruel’ slaughter ]

Animal welfare group records ‘cruel’ slaughter

Author: 
Poly Pantelides

AN ANIMAL welfare group that often works undercover to document animal cruelty in industrial farming has taken footage at a Cyprus abattoir showing goats and sheep slaughtered in what they said were cruel and illegal conditions. 

A member of Compassion in World Farming's Investigation Unit took a video of sheep and goats chained by their rear legs while conscious, hoisted upside down and “bleating piteously”.”It was only at this stage that they were stunned,” the organisation said in a news release. The group said that goats’ horns were cut off immediately after their throats were cut, making it unlikely that the animals were dead and claiming they “would have felt an extreme amount of pain”.  

"This is some of the worst European slaughter footage I have ever seen… What is so disturbing is that new EU slaughter regulations came into force this year - and they are being largely ignored," said Compassion in World Farming’s chief policy advisor, Peter Stevenson. 

Stevenson said that because some goats were stunned but not immediately killed, they could have regained consciousness by the time they were slaughtered, adding that some animals were not stunned at all. Compassion’s investigator took the footage in the run up to the Christian Orthodox Easter celebrations at a single small slaughterhouse and has not investigated Cyprus’ slaughterhouses in general. But they sent a letter to the agriculture minister on Thursday asking him to address the problems they encountered. They have also said they would report Cyprus to the European Commission if they received no response within a month.  

In the letter Compassion in World Farming said that EU regulations prohibit suspending or hoisting conscious animals as well as continuing to cut off horns, unless staff have verified the animal shows no signs of life. Animals should also be killed within seconds of stunning, the organisation said. 

Allowing for the possibility that animals can be slaughtered without stunning for religious reasons, Compassion in World Farming asked for feedback on whether this was the case. 

Agriculture Minister Nicos Kouyialis and the slaughterhouse that allegedly violated the law could not be reached for comment yesterday. 

A European Commission directive that became compulsory this year states that “animals must be spared any avoidable excitement, pain or suffering” including when they are being slaughtered or killed. “Animals must be stunned before slaughter or killed instantaneously.”

Compassion in World Farming warns that the attached video’s scenes may disturb “sensitive viewers”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xQFEHQeBdTI&feature=youtu.be



(Source: Cyprus Mail)
Copyright © Cyprus Mail 2008 Please contact Cyprus Mail for the copyright terms of this article.



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