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Outrage as live animals used as shark bait

Thursday, 27th October 2005

Strasbourg – East Midlands Conservative MEP Roger Helmer has today condemned the use of live shark bait, regularly used by fisherman on the French controlled island of Réunion in the Indian Ocean.

It has been well documented by the British press and campaigns by well respected animal welfare charities, The Kennel Club and the RSPCA that fishermen are regularly rounding up stray cats and dogs to use as live bait, binding their paws with wire and piercing their muzzles with fishhooks.

In a letter to the French Ambassador to the EU, the French Minister for Agriculture and the French Minister for Overseas Territories aswell as a written question to the Commission, Mr Helmer discussed the barbarity of such acts and challenged the commission to act.

Speaking from Strasbourg today, Mr Helmer said:

I was appalled to discover the existence of such a practice, which represents immeasurable and unnecessary cruelty to the animals involved. I would like to bring to the attention of the commission, such an inhumane use of live shark bait and ask what can they can do to prevent this appalling practice and punish the current perpetrators?