HUNDREDS of protesters turned up to a stop live export trade rally in front of Emanuel Exports head office this afternoon.
The rally organised by animals Australia was organised after a 60 Minutes investigation which showed footage of sheep suffering on five live sheep voyages on the Awassi Express.
Protesters gathered with signs and pictures of ships captioned ‘cooked alive’ and ‘Emanuel Exports = animal cruelty’.
Organiser of the rally Katrina Love said she was calling for an industry-wide ban on live exporting.
Protestors at the rally complained that onlookers from the nearby building – in which Emanuel Exports’ head office is based – were laughing and smiling while watching the activity below their window.
“Ultimately we want a complete ban on the export of all live animals for slaughter and most breeding, but realistically and quite reasonably, right now, we want to stop the trade of live sheep to the Middle East, between May and September.
“Only 6-7 per cent of all sheep and cattle producers rely on live exporting, many producers don’t rely on it.
“We thought 2011 was the tipping point when the slaughterhouses in Indonesia were exposed, this feels very much like another tipping point.”
Former federal member for Fremantle Melissa Parke said the community needed to give an important message to Emanuel Exports.
“This should never ever happen again,” she said.
“No more chances should be given, they have had millions of chances and it’s still going on.”
Protester Bev Davies said she made herself watch the program.
“I haven’t slept all night, I haven’t eaten all day, I have just been crying all day,” she said.
“I don’t think as a human who loves animals could not go out and support this.
“We need to ban the trade, we need to change things.”
Protester Sue Mcintyre ok who travelled from Busselton with her family said simply just to “stop live exports”.
“Everything about this is cruel, cruelty that money comes before the animals wellbeing,” she said.
Australian Maritime Marine Safety spokeswoman said the ship in question Awassi Express can leave anytime.
However, it needs clearance from The Department of Agriculture and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority before it can load livestock, she said.
AMSA need the company – Emanual Exports to improve ventilation in the ship before sheep can be loaded.
The Department of Agriculture said the company must reduce stocking density by 17.5 per cent.
The ship is remains moored in Fremantle.
Emanuel Exports director Nicholas Daws described the footage as “heartbreaking” and apologised for his company’s role in the footage.