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Scorned: Animal Rights Advocates in France Intensify Guerrilla Tactics

Mr. Macron’s government has watered down former campaign promises, dashing L214’s hopes that they could make inroads with the support of political leaders.

ELIAN PELTIER: ‘For years, the animal rights movement, scorned by both politicians and the public in the land of foie gras, struggled to gain traction in France, Europe’s biggest producer and consumer of red meat, where one billion animals are slaughtered a year. “Animal welfare has never really been a crowd-pleasing cause among French politicians, although the public agrees that animals shouldn’t be mistreated,” said Sébastien Arsac, co-founder of one of the country’s most vocal animal rights organizations, L214 Éthique et Animaux…

But while French lawmakers are debating a law on agriculture and nutrition this week, Mr. Macron’s government has watered down former campaign promises, dashing L214’s hopes that they could make inroads with the support of political leaders. So its activists, taking a page from the playbook of similarly minded groups in other countries, including the United States, are stepping up a campaign of guerrilla tactics, hoping to shock the Parliament into amending the government’s proposed law.

They recently released a series of clandestinely recorded videos that showed the lack of hygiene on huge egg farms, and the appalling conditions in which distressed hens are kept, plucking out one another’s feathers and trampling on rotting corpses in their cages… Their group forced two of France’s 263 slaughterhouses to shut down after it shared a video showing thrashing horses, cows and sheep being slaughtered while semi-conscious…

Unlike several other European countries, such as Portugal, Spain and the Netherlands, France does not have political parties that have made animal welfare a priority. As a sign that L214 is fighting an uphill battle against politicians, a majority of lawmakers have chosen to ignore the organization’s call for CCTV in slaughterhouses to defend those who work there’. SOURCE…

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