Gabriel Byrne has today called on TDs to support a Private Members Bill aimed at banning hare coursing.
The actor and director has sent an urgent letter on behalf of PETA and Animal Rights Action Network (ARAN) to Irish TDs calling on them to support the Bill put forward by Independent TD Maureen O'Sullivan.
Dáil Éireann is expected to vote on the proposal later today.
"It's hard to imagine anything more barbaric than this so-called 'sport'", The Usual Suspects actor wrote.
"From the terrifying chase, during which hares have been known to rupture internal organs fleeing the hounds, to the moment the petrified and exhausted animals are surrounded ... every minute of hare coursing reflects the hard-heartedness of the participants."
Byrne concludes the letter by saying: "Coursing is an atrocity that should have no place in modern Ireland, which is why it should be banned".
According to Peta, Ireland is now one of only three European countries in which hare coursing is still legal.