Author Topic: Animals maimed in Israeli abattoir 12.12.2012  (Read 882 times)

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Animals maimed in Israeli abattoir 12.12.2012
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2012, 09:52:13 AM »
THE row over live animal exports is to flare again after new footage revealed mistreatment of sheep and cattle at an Israeli abattoir that was cleared by auditors to receive Australian stock.

The footage, obtained by an undercover Israeli journalist and aired by ABC1's 7.30 last night, shows sheep being beaten and thrown, while injured cattle are seen being shocked repeatedly with an electric prodder around the face and eyes.

The images were allegedly captured at Bakar Tnuva abattoir in September, just months after it was audited as part of the Gillard government's new regime and given approval to receive Australian exports.

It is being investigated by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry in line with a criminal probe in Israel.

The government introduced a new closed-supply system last year in the wake of the Indonesian live cattle crisis. Live cattle exports to Indonesia were banned temporarily in June last year after the ABC's Four Corners screened footage of cattle being mistreated at an Indonesian abattoir.

The month-long ban cost 326 jobs in northern Australia and left at least 274,000 animals stranded.Exporters now have to provide an audit to get an abattoir approved to receive Australian animals. The new rules came into force for vessels departing Australia for Israel after September 1.

The abattoir was audited in July by an exporter seeking to include it in its supply chain, with the published report saying it complied with animal welfare standards and the only issue was a "rusty gate causing excessive noise".

DAFF deputy secretary Phillip Glyde told 7.30 the department was working to determine whether the animals in the footage were Australian and how the facility passed the audit.
"It's a reasonable expectation (that the animals are Australian)," he said. "We're conducting an investigation and we're doing that in conjunction with the Israeli authorities who are conducting their own investigations."

He told 7.30 the government was "appalled by what we saw on that video and what was brought to light by the Israeli TV crew". "That's just not acceptable but it doesn't mean the system's not working," he said.

RSPCA Australia chief scientist Bidda Jones said in a statement the footage showed a severe case of animal cruelty.

"The workers are deliberately inflicting pain on injured animals in order to get them to move," she said. "If this facility was in Australia the community would expect government to shut it down."

Dr Bidda said Israel media was reporting that the Israel police force had opened a criminal investigation into the incident.

National Farmers Federation head Jock Laurie told 7.30 that the footage was shocking but said it showed the importance of the work the Australian industry continued to do to improve animal welfare in overseas markets.

The Weekend Australian revealed last month that brutal practices were used to slaughter 21,000 sheep in Pakistan, and Four Corners aired footage showing the sheep being beaten and dragged, having their throats sawn with blunt knives and being thrown into pits, some still alive.