Livestock Carrier Capsizes in Romania
A livestock carrier with approximately 14,600 sheep on board capsized off the coast of Romania on Sunday.
The Palau-flagged Queen Hind, built in 1980, capsized after departing the port of Midia destined for the Middle East. All 22 crewmembers on board have been rescued, and efforts are underway to save the sheep; some were found swimming near the vessel.
Animals International Romania says it is commendable that 33 sheep were rescued in the first hour but notes some animals being dragged along the ground by their horns after being brought ashore. “It is illegal and regrettable that animals are drawn by the horns. After such a nightmare, animals deserve better than this.”
The Romanian Association of Breeders and Exporters of Cattle, Sheep and Pigs from Romania (ACEBOP) have issued a statement expressing their revolt and outrage over the tragedy. “The members of ACEBOP are dismayed by the disaster of the transport of live animals from Romania, by the killing of thousands of sheep today, for unrelated reasons. Thousands of innocent souls who died due to - it is said - some wrong naval maneuvers. We do not accept such explanations, we request an urgent investigation of the responsible institutions, the punishment of those guilty according to the Romanian law of animal welfare.” The organization called on the government to act, saying: “If we are not able to protect animals during long distance transport, at least we have a backbone to prohibit them.”
A spokesperson from Vets Against Live Export in Australia says: “The Jawan narrowly avoided this fate leaving Australia earlier this year...and another carrier ran aground in South America (with cattle only saved due to help from an Australian veterinarian). This is one of the risks that live animals face on these ships.....especially on older ships. So the question is....will the E.U. realise the unique and inherently risky nature of the trade and act?”