BFF-39 Controversy in S.Africa over shipment to Kuwaiti abbatoir

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ZCZC

BFF-39

SAFRICA-KUWAIT-ANIMAL-HEALTH

Controversy in S.Africa over shipment to Kuwaiti abbatoir

PORT ELIZABETH, South Africa, Sept 30, 2019 (BSS/AFP) – Animal rights
activists in South Africa are trying to stop over 60,000 goats, sheep and
cows being shipped to a Kuwaiti abattoir, saying many of them would die en
route.

An inspection of the Al Shuweikh vessel revealed miserable and crammed
conditions, the National Council of Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty
to Animals (NSPCA) said.

“Disease, overcrowding, pneumonia, motion sickness, physical trauma and
injuries, and stress creates the perfect environment for excruciating
suffering and many animals will die in transit,” it warned.

The Kuwaiti-flagged vessel is docked in the southeastern port of East
London.

The animals will be packed like sardines and “not be able to lie down or
rest,” NSPCA spokeswoman Meg Wilson told AFP.

An online petition against the shipment has gathered 77,000 signatures so
far. The NSPCA also conducted two inspections at a farm where the sheep are
being raised which it said revealed abysmal conditions.

“The sheep were fighting for food, there was no shelter, including in the
hospital pens, some animals looked underfed with ocular and nasal discharge.
Some were blind, limping and bruised all over their bodies,” Wilson said.

Authorities in the Eastern Cape province, where East London is located,
said they were not aware that a ship was due to leave for Kuwait shortly
carrying live animals.

However, they added that all vessels had to meet “strict requirements” for
animal welfare, agrarian reform ministry spokesman Ayongezwa Lungisa said.

According to the NSPCA, the ship was supposed to have left in mid-
September but could not confirm if it had departed.

This is the first time the Al Shuweikh is attempting to export live
animals from South Africa. Previously for a decade, it had imported animals
from Australia.

BSS/AFP/RY/20:15 hrs