January 28, 2023

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The French cattle are back (to be put out) after nearly three weeks floating off the Algerian coast

The French cattle are back (to be put out) after nearly three weeks floating off the Algerian coast

French beef cattle. French bulls shipped to Algeria for halal slaughter were not allowed to land there.Photo ANP / AFP

This happened when the animals arrived at the port of Algiers two days later, French daily newspapers reported Release And the Le Monde. The export certificates of three cattle indicated that they were carriers of bovine influenza, a contagious respiratory disease. According to the French authorities, this is a mistake. All calves are vaccinated and in good health, according to the French Ministry of Agriculture. But the French were not able to convince their Algerian colleagues to do so. They prevented the bulls from reaching the Algerian mainland.

The fear of the spread of animal diseases often leads to a true saga of live cattle. Last year, two Spanish ships carrying a total of more than 2,600 head of cattle roamed the sea for three months after both Turkey and Libya refused to accept them.

If it were up to the European Parliament, the weeks of roaming would soon be over. At the beginning of this year, MEPs called on the European Commission to draw up an action plan by 2023 at the latest to avoid moving live animals as much as possible. Parliament also wants the commission to appoint an EU commissioner for animal welfare.

high temperatures

Parliament issued that call after an 18-month investigation by a commission. This showed that EU rules for transporting animals within the EU are by no means always adhered to. For example, transportation is sometimes carried out at very high temperatures and animals make long journeys.

The European Union does not have a control system for the transport of live animals to countries outside the European Union. In the EU, the Netherlands is calling for an EU-wide ban on long-distance transport of livestock, by land or sea, to third countries. Previously, the Netherlands temporarily suspended road transport in 2020, because the remaining areas in non-EU countries often turned out to be unhealthy. Transportation by sea and plane was still going on at that time; The reason was that there were no places to rest in the sea or in the air at all. All livestock transfers outside the European Union have now been resumed.

But exact figures for the current export of live Dutch cattle by sea are lacking. “It’s hard to get an insight into this phenomenon,” says Ann Hillhurst, director of animal rights organization Wakker Dier. “These means of shipping to countries outside the European Union are a drain on livestock exports.”

of the characters that RTL News An investigation last year from the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) showed that in less than a year about 2,750 Dutch livestock were transported by ship to countries outside the European Union. Eyes On Animals previously concluded on the basis of ear tags on video images that Dutch cattle end up in slaughterhouses in Libya and Lebanon.

The French bulls are now back in France, but they won’t end up on the consumer plate. After weeks of floating, destruction awaits them. In the Algerian port, cattle are fed with Algerian hay. Danger According to the French authorities: the highly contagious foot-and-mouth virus is spreading in Algeria.

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