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EU’s animals sent to cruel slaughter

News Section Icon Published 22/10/2014

The cruelty of transporting live EU animals to non-EU countries to be slaughtered continues to shock us. Once animals leave the EU they are no longer protected by EU laws which would ensure their slaughter is as humane as possible.

EU sends animals to a war zone


In the first seven months of 2014, EU countries sent more than 840,000 live sheep and cattle to Libya. The biggest exporters were Romania, Spain and France.

Our Chief Policy Advisor, Peter Stevenson, said “Libya is a war zone.  What on earth is the EU doing sending live animals there?

“It’s absurd that the EU is sending animals to Libya when for many months there has been no effective government that could in any way control what goes on in slaughterhouses.

“They will be making no attempt at all to implement the OIE standards which is the minimum level of protection we should expect for EU animals sent to countries outside the EU.”

The governments of most European countries have strongly advised against travelling to Libya and recommend anyone there should leave immediately.  It is absurd that the EU is sending live animals to Libya when at the same time it’s telling its citizens to leave as the country is so dangerous.

For safety reasons our Investigations Unit is unable to investigate Libyan slaughterhouses, but the situation is unlikely to be any different from neighbouring Egypt where we have documented inhumane, cruel and inept slaughter.

Karantina condemned

Following our expose of Lebanon’s Karantina slaughterhouse in Beirut, our petition calling for the slaughterhouse to be shut down was signed by more than 130,000 people. As a consequence, the Lebanese Agriculture Minister has visited the Karantina slaughterhouse in question.

The Minister reportedly described the state of the slaughterhouse as "catastrophic" and denounced “the cruelty with which the animals are killed”. We are hopeful that this indictment will lead to action to improve the slaughter methods as a matter of urgency. It is totally unacceptable for the EU to send animals to a slaughterhouse which the local Agriculture Minister has condemned as being cruel.

The EU exported 320,00 cattle and 325,000 sheep to Lebanon between 2010 and 2013 and our Investigation Unit documented animals from France, Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania in Lebanon.  The EU has sent 147,000 cattle and sheep to Lebanon in the first seven months of 2014.

Take action

Tell the European Commission they must do all they can to stop the suffering of exported livestock.


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