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Friday 18 April  
News Desk's picture
The Hague, Netherlands
The Hague, Netherlands

Labour members reject ban on ritual slaughter

Published on : 19 June 2011 - 6:18pm | By RNW News Desk (photo: ANP)
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A general meeting of the Dutch Labour Party has passed a motion calling on the parliamentary party to reject a proposed ban on ritual slaughter as practised by Muslims and Jews.

The motion was adopted by a vote of 57.5 percent in favour and 42.5 percent against. 

Labour's parliamentary party had previously said it intended to back the draft bill, submitted by the Animal Rights Party, which would end all forms of ritual slaughter in which animals are not anaesthetised first.

It is not yet clear whether the motion passed by the general Labour meeting will sway its parliamentary party to change its position. Motions are not binding but carry considerable weight.

Many members, especially those with a Jewish or Muslim background, voiced outrage that the parliamentary party had adopted its position without first allowing the party to conduct a thorough discussion on the matter.

Labour leader Job Cohen admitted that the parliamentary party had failed to act properly. “Hence this general meeting,” he explained.

Angry members argued that Islamic and Jewish slaughter customs do not cause animals to suffer more.
Others argued that their suffering is prolonged as the animals remain conscious for a time while they bleed to death.

Many Labour members agree that a ban on ritual slaughter would encroach on the religious tolerance on which Holland has prided itself for centuries.

Other members wondered why the issue is not being discussed in the broader context of animal welfare in general, including abuses in the industrial farming sector.

The bill proposed by the Animal Rights Party will be discussed in parliament on Wednesday.


© Radio Netherlands Worldwide


Evert C. Weidner 20 June 2011 - 3:13pm / USA

I am always amazed on how much influence religious institutions have over their congregation, telling them in fact what and how to specifically adhere to or believe, a subject which is highly and uniquely personal in its detail, although common in its overall premise. He or she has the inalienable right to the differences without imposing them unduly on others. In my opinion, specific universal acts and shared dictates should originate and come up to its uniting church-, mosque- or temple administrations, and not down the other way around. The fact that the latter generally appears to remain the case, is probably the reason why so many have lost their lives, historically and now, all in the name of the authoritarian dictates from these(often male oriented and biased)organizations, now factually becoming outmoded and increasingly irrelevant.

Koos van Dijk 21 August 2011 - 11:26am

Please sent me your e-mail at Evert Weidner

from your brother in law (ex),

Koos van Dijk ,Delft The Netherlands

Koos van Dijk 21 August 2011 - 11:23am / The Netherlands

Evert stuur mij een e-mail at

Koos van Dijk

Hiram1 19 June 2011 - 7:00pm

Angry members argued that Islamic and Jewish slaughter customs do not cause animals to suffer more

jasmin 19 June 2011 - 6:25pm

Hope they reject the budget cuts of RNW as well..

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