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Live export fight taken to the Commons

News Section Icon Published 08/09/2011

An e-petition on live animal exports aims to take the fight against the practice to the Commons.

The campaign against live exports from British ports has been stepped up with a new petition launched on the government's website.

Compassion is supporting this urgent initiative by calling on its supporters to sign the petition which calls for antiquated law to be changed and give local councils the authority to say 'no' to live exports through their ports.

After the success of the march against live exports in Ramsgate last month, which attracted more than 300 people, the e-petition is another way opponents of live exports can express their disgust at this cruel trade.

Compassion's Chief Executive Philip Lymbery said: "There is no way live exports should still exist in 2011. The people of Ramsgate have spoken out against their port being used for this abhorrent trade and, with this petition, everyone can join them in calling for the government to act."

If the petition, which is open to UK residents only, reaches 100,000 signatures it will be considered for debate in parliament.

Outdated laws

The petition calls on the government to amend the Harbours, Docks & Piers Clauses Act 1847, which makes it illegal to refuse a ship the use of a port if it is carrying out lawful trade. This is the law which meant that Thanet District Council could not ban live animal exporters from using Ramsgate port, despite the fact the council opposed the practice. It also calls for an eight hour limit on live animal transport for fattening and slaughter.

Worldwide movement

There is clear and vocal opposition to live animal exports across the world. Footage taken by Animals Australia of cattle from the country brutally mistreated in Indonesian abattoirs caused an outcry and the petition for an eight hour limit in the European Union has well over 500,000 signatures.

Compassion has long fought for an end to long distance live animal transport. Animals should be fattened and slaughtered as close as possible to their place of birth and the trade in livestock replaced by a trade in meat. Supporters can help make this a reality by signing this urgent e-petition today.

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