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Americans To Protest Australia’s “Horrific” Live Export Trade

March 28, 2015 by Leave a Comment

The News

For the first time ever, U.S. animal rights activists are staging a protest against Australia’s live export trade. The organizer, Loretta Smalls, says it’s “a show of solidarity with thousands of our Australian brothers and sisters who are fighting to ban the horrific practice.” The protest will take place at the Australian consulate in Los Angeles on April 15th.

U.S. Animal Rights Activists To Protest Australia's "horrific" Live Export Trade

U.S. animal rights activists to protest Australia’s “horrific” live export trade in Los Angeles on 4/15

Each year, Australia ships millions of live sheep, cattle and goats to countries in the Middle East and Asia where they are slaughtered for meat. Footage taken during more than 30 investigations conducted by Animals Australia demonstrates that many of the animals who are exported endure “routine abuse” and “brutal slaughter” in countries that have few, if any, protections in place for animals. In addition, millions of animals have died on the ships during the treacherous overseas journeys.

For the Australian activists, the U.S. protest can’t come soon enough. “We need all the international support that we can get,” said Sue Clarke, an activist in Brisbane, Australia. “In spite of growing public demand to end live exports, our government is working to expand them.” In fact, Australia is finalizing plans to ship an estimated one million cattle to China each year. If the $1 billion deal is signed, the number of cattle exported would double from its current levels.

live export cows

Cows being unloaded from a live transport ship

As the government works to increase the number of animals exported, it is also reducing the amount of oversight, which, according to Australian activists, is already wholly inadequate. Starting on April 1st, the Department of Agriculture will decrease by 30% the number of audits of unloading docks, feedlots, slaughterhouses and other live export facilities.

Australian cow in Gaza (photo: Animals Australia)

Australian cow in Gaza (photo: Animals Australia)

Protests against the live export trade across Australia attract hundreds of people, but the government is unmoved by the public backlash and the graphic videos that have triggered it. In fact, Australia’s Minister of Agriculture Barnaby Joyce stated in late January that a review of the government’s oversight program “demonstrates that Australian livestock exported overseas are treated humanely in almost every instance.”

Live export protest in Sydney (photo: James Morgan)

Live export protest in Sydney (photo: James Morgan)

Of all of the countries in Asia and the Middle East that receive live exports from Australia, only Israel has a community of local activists who are working to stop them. According to the Israeli group Against Live Transports, about 200,000 sheep and cattle are shipped each year from Australia to Israel. The entire trip from the feedlots in Australia to the slaughterhouses in Israel is treacherous for the animals, but the activists call particular attention to the one leg of the journey for which they have the most documentation – the unloading of the animals. On April 8th, dozens of Israeli activists are traveling to the port city of Eilat to protest the arrival of a transport ship from Australia.

Israeli activists protesting live animal exports

Animal rights activists with Against Live Transports use street theater to educate the public about live export cruelty (photo: Against Live Transports)


Live export protest in Eilat, Israel on April 8th. Translation: Stop the Horror (photo: Against Live Transports)

The U.S. and Israel are not the only countries to protest Australia’s live export trade. Activists in the Czech Republic, Greece and Egypt have also demonstrated in solidarity with Australian activists — while activists in England battle their own country’s live animal exports.

live export protest in the Czech Republic

Activists with 269Life in the Czech Republic protest Australia’s live exports

Your Turn

If you live in or near Los Angeles, please participate in the protest against Australia on April 15th.

Please visit Stop Live Exports and Animals Australia’s Ban Live Export initiative to learn more about live exports and find out how you can help.

Comments via Facebook Comments

  1. Mahnaz tafreshi says:

    This is horrible
    Stop animal export now

  2. denise devereux says:

    Please help us stop this horrific cruel trade. I seem to have tears in my eyes all the time. Sometimes I wish I was dead so as to not have to see what is happening in this cruel world.
    Australia has a bad record looking after their animals. The dollar pulls all the strings and our government kisses the asses of those countries wishing to inflict this barbaric torture.



    1. Mahnaz tafreshi says:

      Dearest Denise
      I do feel the same you are not alone I do sign a lot of petition and share too

  3. Suzanne Cass says:

    As for Paul Burke’s comment, he’s dreaming. Tge RSPCA does not monitor a single aspect of the trade. Who is he trying to fool?

  4. Stephan Küpper says:

    Stop killing animals

  5. CLEO CAMI says:


  6. Liane Craigie says:

    We need help with live export in South Africa as well. This happens once a year, and there is nothing i can do, they block us in all directions. Please include us, its once a year, in east london, south africa.

    Kind Regards
    Liane Craigie

    1. Suzanne Cass says:

      Liane, we know that the South African SPCA took this to court a few years ago. They did tgeir best, I think it went as far as your High Court. The man who was managing it was the SPCA’s Andreis Venter. Maybe get in touch with him?

      1. Liane Craigie says:

        Hi there

        Tried all that, they wont tell us a thing. We cant get near the ship, and i requested permission for this. The port manager, brought me a hand delivered letter. The usual thing, about danger etc.
        There are people who are scared to talk, because this is a small town, and a lot of people are involved. We have to scrounge and work with overseas countries, as the ship comes sneaking in, when we least expect it. We have footage from last years episode. Shock prodding and the cattle tripping as they boarded the ship.

        Carte Blanche did an expose three years ago, it is on the net. The conditions of the Barkly Pearl. These farmers who are the brokers, regard this as ‘business” millions are involved.

        But thank you for getting back to me.
        Kind Regards

        1. Suzanne Cass says:

          Hi Liane … sounds like what goes on here, no-one can get near loadings. The Barkly Pearl is the one that has usually done the run from here to Mauritius, and it’s a shocker. The Diamantina has just arrived there from here and it looks even worse. See the Facebook page Exposed. Live Export Ships from Australia. Also, can you not get a transcript from your High Court case there? Usually there is a database of higher court records. Has your SPCA gone cold on this now? Cheers Suzanne

          1. Liane Craigie says:

            We had the Diamantina last July.
            We will not get anything out of the Head Office. The farmers surround themselves with police when they load.
            There is nothing we can do, nothing. I will speak to someone regarding the court docs, other than that, we are blocked in all directions. Its so frustrating, thats why i came to this site, out of desperation xxxxxx

        2. Katrina Love says:

          Last year in Australia, we had over 300 loadings of some 3 million sheep, cattle, camels, goats and buffalo at 15 ports. 70 of those loadings (almost 200,000 cattle and 2 million sheep) were at Fremantle, where we (Stop Live Exports (SLE)) are based.

          SLE, along with Animals’ Angels and Vets Against Live Export used to monitor the loadings from the access gate… about 80 metres from the ships – we documented many sheep arriving in trucks at port who were ill or injured and should have been deemed unfit to load even onto the trucks, sheep being chased around the docks and over-use of electric sheep prodders; although the use of electric prodders on sheep is not permitted at all by OIE recommendations and supposedly limited by Australian reglations, it is requently the defaut method of getting sheep to move). All monitoring by the public in that area of the port was disallowed in 2013 and we now keep watch from another vantage point.

          The Barkly Pearl often loads in Fremantle (as you know, Liane – we have been in contact several times via email) and the Diamantina stopped in on the way to Broome – very similar to the Barkly Pearl, but slightly larger and heavier, but same very open and very low-to-the-water-line “livestock” area.

          Photos were sent to us in 2013 along with a very long email, from the Mauritian importer, of the condition of the Barkly Pearl when it arrived in Port Louis with its “cargo” of cattle, including many pregnant cows, all of whom had been certified as not pregnant by Australian authorities. Some even gave birth on board and none of the ASEL requirements for pregnant animals (such as extra space and bedding) were met and it was a very rough voyage – reported that animals were “unable to rise” and were suffering from heat exhaustion and dehydration. He also told us that mortality figures were falsified by the on board vet and the captain, that they ran out of medication for four days and that the decks were washed only once during the 15 day voyage (supposed to be washed every two days).

          And still many live export supporters and suppliers refer to the luxury cruises their “livestock” get to take… where they are treated like royalty.

  7. It is crucial to our fight in Australia that international colleagues bring this awful trade to the attention of their public. Think about the horrors and cruelty of live export when next you consider buying an Australian product. There are no considerations of animal welfare here – this is all about farmers making an extra buck. Also, every animal exported live loses the Australian economy a fortune. At the moment, domestic meat processors are struggling to find enough animals. But this trade is supported by our government because the farmers have the political whip hand. Australians should hang their heads in shame over this.

  8. Connie DellaBarba says:

    I can’t believe in this day and age, something like this is ok. This is beyond torture and cruel, it is inhumane and absolutely wrong. Why is this ok? hese animals are tortured and can feel pain just like all of us. Please stop this now.

  9. Gerean Pflug says:

    The global population doesn’t yet realize what a unification of animal rights activists is going to do in terms of raising public awareness. This single campaign will unify SO MANY more of us. I believe that U.S. uniting with Australia animal rights activists is only the beginning in terms of worldwide ARA participation in the battle on Live Export issues. The social media channels are lighting up and so many of us, (Bloggers, Site/Page Admins/Social Media Activists) are in a position to unify and make one HUGE, historically unprecedented SPLASH that will be felt around the world.

    I will be overjoyed to be part of the battle on the Live Export Trade. We are willing to partner and cross-promote/support ALL ARAs who are part of this campaign.

    ~ Gerean Pflug, Admin., The Animal Spirits (Facebook and WordPress)

    1. Suzanne Cass says:

      Thank you, Gerean, I hope that gives some comfort to Liane; we are all fighting the same battle. Australia’s live export trade has grown to an unconscionable level with animal welfare being just disastrous.

  10. Mary Bogaert says:

    stop the cruelty against animals

  11. Phillip Woodhead says:

    It is a disgrace the federal government not policing things overseas to such an extent that they have allowed animals to be put in positions over there that they are treated so poorly. However only last month one of the federal governments own sheep properties; “Murrayfield” on Bruny Island, Tasmania was charged with acts of animal cruelty to its sheep. Terrible that they are not able to even within Australia run farm animals without cruelty.

  12. Suzanne Cass says:

    I think we can safely disregard any commentary from a member of the Save Live Export group. The only reason there are any assumptions that there are any ‘improvements’ – or any reason to believe that each and every Australian animal faces anything but vile torture in each and every one of these countries is because the exporters and the Australian government say so. And the Australian government only knows what the exporters tell it and it believes all the propaganda. It does not investigate anything itself. And our American friends – and thank you from the bottom of our hearts – are free to protest about anything they want and we are endlessly grateful to them and other friends in other countries as well. Added to which, America’s live export trade is miniscule when compared with that of Australia.

  13. Katrina Love says:

    Hi there

    I am the Stop Live Exports Campaign Manager and Human Chain bridge event organiser. Our organisation has been campaigning and lobbying against live animal exports and cruelty in animal transport for over 20 years.

    Please visit our website:

    or our facebook page:

    to find out how you can help.

    Check out our Human Chain video on YouTube:

    Feel free to email me for more information.

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