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Time Is Running Out To Stop Horse Smuggling: We Need Your Help

12 months ago

16th March, 2023 15h38

World Horse Welfare

Charity World Horse Welfare today urged horse lovers to take part in its #StopHorseSmuggling campaign by writing to the Prime Minister to ask him to deliver on his government’s manifesto commitment to ban live exports to slaughter, and to enforce the new law. 

The Kept Animals Bill, which will ban live exports of animals for slaughter and fattening, was first introduced to the UK Parliament in June 2021 but, despite cross-party support, it has stalled and will drop from the agenda unless it is passed before the end of the year.

Roly Owers, Chief Executive of World Horse Welfare said: “This is such a good Bill that contains so much that is good for all animal welfare, including banning live export for slaughter and fattening, and livestock worrying. So much work has been put into developing this excellent legislation, which has cross-party support, it would be a travesty if this government failed to allow the Parliamentary time to get it across the line.

The issue of live export to slaughter is a founding issue for World Horse Welfare. No horse, pony or donkey has officially been exported for slaughter in recent years, but we know today that equines are being smuggled out of the country, often travelling in poor conditions under fraudulent identification, and that some of these end their days in a slaughterhouse. Passing the Kept Animals Bill into law and ensuring its proper enforcement could end this cruel trade. Please do all you can to support our campaign.”

The charity has set up a website where the public can email the Prime Minister quickly and easily HERE.

Live export for slaughter does not just affect horses that have been bred for this trade. Any horse can end up being exported to slaughter, from outgrown children’s ponies through to ex-sports horses; horses sold with the best of intentions and in the belief that they could never end their lives in a slaughterhouse may well end up there. 

Many of the horses are being transported ‘under the radar’, often travelling long distances in sub-standard conditions. To many of us, horses are much-loved pets or members of the family, but to those involved in the trade of ‘low value’ horses between Britain and the EU they are simply a commodity. Falsely re-identifying a horse who has been signed out of the food chain with a fraudulent ‘clean’ passport makes a horse appear eligible for slaughter and therefore of more potential value to the trader.

Find out more about horse smuggling and live export to slaughter HERE.

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