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Swedish mink farms slammed for 'cruelty'

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12:39 CEST+02:00
Animal rights activists say they have uncovered evidence of animal cruelty in Swedish mink farms, and are calling on the government to ban the rearing of mink for fur.

The Animal Rights Alliance (Djurrättsalliansen) has for the past 18 months been documented conditions at 16 Swedish fur farms. Photos taken at the farms show mink that have bitten each other to death and cages containing the bodies of dead animals.

The alliance is now calling on politicians to act:

“We argue that all mink farmers are breaking animal welfare laws and that the regulations are not compatible with our animal welfare laws. Given that these breaches of the law have been allowed to continue for 22 years, we argue that this is no longer a case for police and animal welfare inspectors, but for politicians,” said Lina Flyren, spokeswoman for Djurrättsalliansen.

“We argue that rearing [minks] is morally abhorrent and should be banned immediately,” she said.

Flyren said the organization had not yet decided whether to push for prosecution of the offending mink farmers:

“This is more a political question than a matter for the police. If you have such serious breaches of the animal protection laws at 20 percent of mink farms, then it's pretty representative of mink farms in general. We want a ban - that's all we're going to argue for,” she said.

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The activists have said they will not cooperate with legal investigations into their break-ins at Swedish mink farms.

“We admit that we did it, but we won't reveal the identities of our research teams. We view it as vital to keep that to ourselves,” she said.

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