EFI: Shorthorn Express Headed Back to Israel Despite Earlier Attack

July 8, 2024

Source: EFI
Source: EFI

Ethical Farming Ireland (EFI) has raised concerns that the livestock carrier Shorthorn Express is currently sailing to Israel from Greenore despite having previously been subject to a Houthi attack in the Red Sea region in June. The Shorthorn Express was travelling to Haifa port from Portugal with 12,000 sheep on board at the time.

EFI continues to raise other concerns about the trade. The organisation is calling for an immediate end to live export to countries outside the EU that do not share Ireland’s animal welfare standards. “We would also like the age of calves raised to eight weeks instead of 15 days,” said Director, Caroline Rowley.

EFI notes instances where unweaned calves are not being fed after the 19-hour maximum period without feed. EFI has initiated judicial proceedings against the state in relation to this.

It has also submitted reports and complaints on the treatment of unweaned calves at marts before they are exported. Calves can be at a mart for 10 hours or more, in a noisy, chaotic environment with no feed, no access to water, no bedding, and no room to lie down on the cold concrete floor.

EFI claims that documentation confirms that the animals then suffer at sea as a result of poor ventilation. “Yet these shipments continue to be authorised, even during summer months,” says Rowley. “We have provided evidence to Minister McConalogue of cattle arriving in Israel from Ireland riddled with ringworm, full of nasal discharge, covered in manure, some showing evidence of corneal ulcers. Our complaints are ignored.

“We have provided video evidence of Irish cattle exported to Lebanon and Jordan being slaughtered in an inhumane manner, hoisted up by a hind leg whilst being repeatedly stabbed at in the neck. We have provided evidence of cruel practices in other countries we export to. Our complaints are ignored.”

She says all these activities are in breach of national and EU legislation that states no harm or suffering should come to the thousands of animals exported every year.

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