Pressure forces Ukip members to back down on non-stun slaughter ban
UK Independence Party (Ukip) members have backtracked on party policy to ban non-stun slaughter after criticism from the Jewish community.
After dubbing themselves the 'animal rights' party – calling for an outright ban on non-stun slaughter following leaked CCTV footage of a non-stun halal abattoir this week – two party members have backtracked on the decision, the Jewish Chronicle newspaper has reported.
In a statement, the party said: “We see no reason why religious groups should not take into account the concerns of animal welfare when carrying out slaughter.”
However, Stuart Agnew, Ukip MEP told the Jewish Chronicle on Tuesday (3 Febuary): “This isn’t aimed at you — it’s aimed elsewhere — it’s aimed at others.
“You’ve been caught in the crossfire – collateral damage. You know what I mean.”
The MEP went on to say: “We’ll have lost the Jewish vote for sure, they won’t support us now.
“But we might gain votes elsewhere — and that’s what they’re after, general election votes.”
UKIP's forthcoming manifesto on animal welfare will be the strongest of any major political party in the UK— UKIP (@UKIP) February 3, 2015
Another Ukip MEP, Paul Nuthill, said he was “surprised” at his party’s decision to ban all non-stun methods, stating: “We know that Jewish religious slaughter is done with the highest standards in mind.”
However, unlike halal, for meat to be kosher in the Jewish faith, the animal must be killed in the schechita method, which does not allow any mechanical stunning of the animal before slaughter.
According to Schechita UK, due to the “abrupt and dramatic collapse” on cerebral perfusion caused by the throat-slitting, the animal is rendered unconscious within a couple of seconds.
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