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YOUR coverage of the story of livestock shot by army marksmen in the Liscaroll area of Co Cork, (June 3) made for disturbing reading. These animals were shot because they had not been tagged. The manner in which this slaughter took place is an absolute disgrace on the part of State agencies.
We depend on the Department of Agriculture to protect animals from cruel practices and, on this occasion at least, it failed to meet that basic requirement. It is my understanding that there is in animal welfare legislation a provision which states you cannot kill one domestic animal in the sight of another.
Obviously, the Department of Agriculture did not observe that provision on this occasion.
But clearly also, Ireland does not have an effective animal welfare organisation or group with any real teeth to seek better legislative protection or enforcement of the little legislation we have got. We have an animal welfare bill in the system, but I suppose it would be foolish to expect any great improvements in animal protection from this legislation given that a number of Dáil deputies are involved in coursing clubs and support bloodsports.
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