United Poultry Concerns
ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS 'LIBERATE'
The Independent, Michael McCarthy, 24 April 2003
| More than 1,000 battery hens have been "liberated"
in a raid on a chicken farm, animal rights activists claimed yesterday.
The birds were removed from the farm in two horse boxes and have now
been given homes as "companion animals" with sympathisers,
the Animal Liberation Front said. The raid happened during the Easter
weekend at Wallops Wood Farm in Droxford, Hampshire, when 16 balaclava-clad
activists broke into farm buildings and removed the chickens. Hampshire
police said they were investigating a burglary at the farm, where
extensive damage had been caused and some poultry had been released.No
one from the farm was available for comment.|
Robin Webb, a spokesman for the Animal Liberation Front, said the
raid was "to highlight the cruelty of the battery system, which
has been condemned by every government committee of inquiry since
the Bramble report of 1965". Mr Webb alleged that hens at the
farm had fallen out of their cages and were living in deep piles of
chicken droppings. Some had died in their own droppings, he said,
adding that the activists had made a video of conditions at the farm
which would be passed on to a national animal welfare campaigning
group. Mr Webb said that the raiders had taken away 1,023 hens. He
said: "They will be re-homed in places where they will be treated
as companion animals and they will live out their natural life span."
The activists had damaged the caging system, conveyor belts and feeding
apparatus and left slogans painted on the walls, Mr Webb said.
The EU has passed a new law to phase out battery cages, which comes
into effect in 2012. So far, the British Government has declined to
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