SHARE
COPY LINK

ESKIL ERLANDSSON

Minister: Mink neglect must stop

Sweden's agriculture minister Eskil Erlandsson has demanded an end to the neglectful treatment of minks after having been presented with macabre film footage from Sweden's mink farms.

Minister: Mink neglect must stop

Erlandsson promised swift measures to curb the abuse, but opposition to the practice of mink farming continued to grow.

“This can not be allowed to happen. That which we have seen on the pictures is not consistent with Swedish law,” said Eskil Erlandsson to news agency TT, after a hastily arranged meeting with the Board of Agriculture (Jordbruksverket).

The board has been given the task of developing a plan to stop the neglect and to establish checks to ensure an improvement of animal protection. The board will also compile a report of current research.

Erlandsson has promised more funds for animal protection controls, so that transparency can work more efficiently.

The pictures, recorded over the past 18 months by the The Animal Rights Alliance (Djurrättsalliansen) and showing mink that have bitten each other to death and cages containing the bodies of dead animals, have received an angry reaction.

Left Party leader Lars Ohly, in a debate article in Aftonbladet, demanded swift measures to tackle the situation, or Eskil Erlandsson’s resignation.

The Animal Rights Alliance has called for mink farming to be banned.

“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.

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.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

ESKIL ERLANDSSON

Swedish MP resigns over groping allegations

Eskil Erlandsson, an MP for the Centre Party and a former minister for rural affairs, resigned from parliament on Thursday after being accused of inappropriate sexual behaviour.

Swedish MP resigns over groping allegations
Four female MPs have accused Erlandsson of unwelcome physical advances, saying he touched them without their consent.
 
Upon the revelations, the Centre Party immediately asked Erlandsson to resign. 
 
“There has been very inappropriate behaviour toward a number of women that is completely unacceptable,” Centre Party spokesman Anders Jonsson told TT. 
 
Four women told Jonsson that Erlandsson touched them inappropriately during lunch and dinner meetings. All four of the women are MPs for the Moderate party, including Cecilie Tenfjord-Toftby, who spoke publicly about her encounter with Erlandsson. 
 
She told P4 Sjuhärad that Erlandsson put a hand on her thigh during a lunch at the parliament building. She said the other women’s stories are nearly identical. 
 
“This is not okay. You can’t behave in this way,” Tenfjord-Toftby told P4 Sjuhärad. “I was mostly pissed off, but also offended and disappointed that a colleague would do that.”
 
Tenfjord-Toftby said she told her party leadership about the incident, which sparked others to say they had been exposed to something similar from Erlandsson. 
 
Jonsson said that after he heard the women’s story, he asked Erlandsson to step down. 
 
“No one should be subjected to this. This was something that crossed the line, so there was no doubt that I should urge him to resign,” he said. 
 
Erlandsson has declined to comment. 
 
Jonsson said that the Centre Party would not report the matter to the police and that any additional steps should be the decision of the women affected. 
 
Erlandsson has been a Member of Parliament since 1994 and was appointed Minister of Agriculture after the 2006 election. In January 2011, the new Rural Ministry was established and he was instead named the minister of rural affairs. 
SHOW COMMENTS