In March I had the pleasure of working with a professional investigator in France. I expected this person to be somewhat hardened after seeing horrible things for the past 15 years. He works in countries where animal welfare is much less developed, such as Africa, Asia and the Middle East. He has investigated animal smuggling, poaching and massive ritual slaughterhouses. Unlike me, he is not allowed to speak- he just observes and films. This protects his identity and allows him to do his job professionally- that is, to GET the difficult footage so that organizations can take action afterwards. I have the advantage, as an animal welfare inspector, to say my opinion most of the time, attempt to get help or first aid for the animals, and call the police. Because I am there with the animals, and my priority is not always to get the footage. But sometimes footage is our only “weapon” to defend the animals. Thus, people like this person are critical. And people like this person keep a lot of horrible memories bottled up and thus suffer themselves…
I asked him what was one of the worst jobs he ever had to do, and he told me it was in Egypt, inspecting the slaughterhouses and the slaughter festivals there. Bassatin, for example is a huge slaughterhouse located in Cairo. It consists of numerous large buildings without any installations inside. Men run around chasing and screaming at the cattle and sheep and camels. Each man carries a large knife and uses it to stab the animals in their eyes (to make them blind and to manipulate their heads), their tendons (to make them fall down, rendering them totally helpless) and their tails (to cause pain and immobilization). Animals’ Australia managed to get this footage on Australian television and as a result the Australian Minister of Agriculture placed a temporary ban on the export of live cattle to Egypt (which is phenomenal). But unfortunately Egyptian slaughterhouses like Bassatin continue to kill animals, just not Australian ones. I read on the Egyptian Tourism Site that the tourist industry is its second most important source of foreign currencies…thus we thought that this action could have a small impact. It takes just a minute to print these 2 letters out and to sign your name on them, and less than a Euro or dollar to mail away. Please take the time to do this, even if our impact is miniscule, it is worth the try.
There are two letters, one is addressed to the Minister of Tourism, and one to the President.
If you are feeling very motivated you can also go on this site:
and paste in this letter there. It is a site where tourists can express their complaints regarding Egypt.
Feel free to pass this on to your friends to also encourage them to take this action.
Thanks and greetings from Cologne,