Animal Welfare Disaster in Egypt Forces Australia to Suspend Live Exports

sheep carcass export ship transport

Live animal exports to Egypt from Australia have been suspended after Animals Australia – a leading animal rights organization who has exposed cruelty in the controversial export trade – revealed new evidence of widespread animal cruelty in the North African country. According to the Australia-based animal rights group, “investigators have recently returned from Egypt,” where they gathered evidence described as “damning, showing Australian cattle being subjected to brutal treatment in the country’s only two accredited abattoirs.”

As a result, Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council announced it was suspending the trade of animals to Egypt after it said publicly the new footage revealed actions by Egyptians that was “horrific.”

This is not the first time exports to Egypt have been suspended. In 2006, after other gross violations of animal rights and cruelty emerged, the trade was stopped, but was resumed later despite protests from Animals Australia and activists in Australia.

“Footage has been provided to the Federal Department of Agriculture. As a result, Australia’s live export industry — which has consistently lauded these facilities as being state-of-the-art — is in damage control. Late tonight they announced that they have voluntarily suspended the live trade to Egypt,” said Animals Australia in a statement published on their website breaking the news.

In December, Green Prophet reported that some 30,000 cows died on a ship destined for Egypt after the Egyptian government refused to allow the ship to dock at a Red Sea port. They were slaughtered as a “precaution,” the ministry said.

Animals Australia’s Campaign Director, Lyn White, said in a statement that the ship was anchored at sea after being refused port in a number of countries in the region, including Egypt, where the cattle were supposed to be offloaded.

It’s understood that ventilation problems on the converted livestock vessel, the MV Gracia Del Mar, had caused the deaths of more than half of the animals on board since the ship left South America for Egypt a few weeks ago.

The ship was anchored in the Red Sea for weeks and saw more animals perish as a result.

“This is nothing short of an animal welfare disaster. If remaining cattle are not offloaded more of these animals will suffer appalling deaths at sea. We are appealing to authorities in Egypt to offload the remaining cattle at al-Sohkna, as was originally intended.

“This disaster is just another example of the inherent risks of transporting animals by sea. It was only nine years ago that 5,000 Australian sheep perished on board the MV Cormo Express after country after country refused to allow it to berth.

“And this isn’t the first time that mechanical issues have caused mass deaths on live export ships. We only need to look to the breakdown of the Al Messilah in Adelaide last year. Had that vessel broken down on the open ocean it would have caused a similar welfare catastrophe — as thousands of animals would have died,” she said.

Image for illustration purposes via Liveexportshame

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12 thoughts on “Animal Welfare Disaster in Egypt Forces Australia to Suspend Live Exports”

  1. Mazjnoen says:

    I simply don’t have words for the disgusting way people treat animals. We like to consider ourselves as superior to animals, but looking at our behaviour we truly are the lowest form of life.
    Mahatma Gandhi once rightly said: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
    These animals are sacrificed for our food (I read “human lust for meat” in one of the previous comments, which is also my point of view); we should at least make sure that their wellfare is guaranteed, so no more live export of animals, strict animal welfare laws all over the world, compliance monitoring and education on animal welfare. The suffering of these animals is caused by us, so we are the only ones to stop it!

  2. Ira Kroll says:

    My emotions on watching the horrific footage of animal cruelty in Egypt.

  3. Ira Kroll says:

    Please if you want to help us stop Live Export and your are non Australian sign the letter here:

    we need as many signatures as possible to stop this horrific trade a.s.a.p.

    However we should not stop here Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysai and other countries have been investigated on cruelty on Live Exported Animals. They are tortured before the slaughter and non professionals do the Halal slaughter. These countries need education on animal welfare and animal welfare laws that only a professional trained person can do the slaughter. They also need laws that the animals need to be stunned before slaughter.

  4. Julia from USA says:

    If Australia resumes live exports to the Middle East, particularly Egypt, ever again, they will certainly be viewed as having a big black eye to the rest of developed world.

  5. Nicky says:

    While the government, and opposition expected to be elexted in September are sucked in by the farmers and the exporters this wretched trade in animal misery and suffering will continue. They KNOW that over 2.5 million animals have died over a decade on the third world wrecks of ships, on voyages that can take 6 weeks – the animals cannot lie down on the flooring and sped the duration mired in excrement. The hapless survivors, so long as they can be dragged off the ship with a pulse, are handed over to savages, as we have seen in credible evidence from Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Turkey, Pakistan, and now, for the THIRD time, Egypt. 84% of decent hard working Australians have declared themselves to be deeply, deeply ashamed – this trade demeans each and every one of us.

    1. Nicky, please send me links here or offline re your reports from all the countries you mention. I would be happy to follow up on it.

    2. I suppose the rationale goes: well, the animals were destined to die anyway in slaughterhouses…

  6. JTR says:

    The animals are 100% innocent victims of our human lust for meat, which makes us more susceptible to various diseases.

  7. Karl says:

    The export of live animal souls for slaughter is simply barbaric…and that is without the inherent cruelty the animals suffer.

    Despite the opposition from the vast majority of Australians, the Govt continues to permit greedy exporters to ply their trade. Every year we see thousands of animals die miserable deaths en-route to overseas nations who have no mercy, care or interest in their welfare, and millions more endure horrendous brutality at the hands of butchering savages.

    This trade is ending of that there is no doubt….and the result will be if you want our meat you will take it in a box.

    May Allah defend the voiceless animals.

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