Author Topic: 20,000 sheep remain in limbo in Pakistan 20.9.2012  (Read 685 times)

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20,000 sheep remain in limbo in Pakistan 20.9.2012
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2012, 09:07:46 PM »
The future of more than 20,000 Australian sheep held in Pakistan is still unknown, despite the animals being declared healthy by an independent veterinarian.

The sheep were shipped to the Middle East by Fremantle-based Wellard Exports, but have been rejected twice because of claims some had scabby mouth disease.

    Thousands of Australian sheep fill a holding area at a farm in Pakistan. height=227 Photo: Thousands of Australian sheep remain in a holding area at a farm in Bin Qaisim town, south-west of Karachi, Pakistan  (AFP: Asif Hassan)    

Following an inspection, a veterinarian from the United Arab Emirates declared the animals free from infectious diseases and should be slaughtered for meat production.

The Federal Agriculture Minister Joe Ludwig says he is hopeful of finding a solution.

"The High Commission, the exporter and the Pakistan Government are working to resolve it," he said.

"I've already asked the Australian Chief Veterinary officer to call his counterpart in Pakistan to clarify and find a resolution to the matter.

"We do want to see an appropriate animal welfare outcome."

"To the best of our knowledge the sheep remain healthy and pose no risk; they did have clearance from Australia.

"The animals were inspected by the Pakistan vet health officials on arrival and were approved as meeting them [standard].

We are working to get an early resolution on the matter but it isn't easy."

More than 1,000 of the animals have been destroyed and it is understood Wellard is seeking an injunction to prevent further culls.

Posted 3 hours 14 minutes ago