Two recent cases have confirmed the cruelty and suffering behind live animal exports.

Al Kuwait/Cape Town – On 18 February after sailing from Brazil a week before, the livestock carrier ship Al Kuwait with a reported 19000 cattle onboard had to make an emergency dock in Cape Town, South Africa, for loading fuel, water, food and medication for crew and animals. The National Council of Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) boarded the ship in the evening of 18 Feb and discovered the animals in distressing circumstances: some were knee deep in their own excrement and urine, they were over packed and the stench of the ship permeated Cape Town to such an extent that residents were unable to breathe for days. The NSPCA removed a number of dead animals from the ship and euthanized 8 more who were suffering. The ship departed Cape Town on 20 bounding for Port of Basra in Iraq and it is not yet arrived.

Al Kuwait jorney: AL KUWAIT, Livestock Carrier – Details and current position – IMO 9590931 – VesselFinder

MV Bahijah/Australia – The livestock carrier MV Bahijah transporting about 14,000 sheep and 1,000 cattle started its journey from Fremantle, Australia, to the Middle East on 5 January 2024.
After two weeks of sailing, the vessel received the order from the Australian government to turn back due to increased attacks on cargo ships in the Red Sea. The animals remained confined aboard the MV Bahijah for more than five weeks while the exporter was trying to get a new permission to re-export the animals without offloading them. They were finally taken off the ship on 14 February, transported by truck from Fremantle Port to appropriate premises in Western Australia and had been held in a feedlot in quarantine amid biosecurity concerns.
Today, we sadly got the news that a notice of intention has been approved and will allow the exporter to re-export the livestock to Israel without passing through the Red Sea.

Australia Agriculture Department:

MV Bahijah journey: BAHIJAH, Livestock Carrier – Details and current position – IMO 9360788 – VesselFinder

These animals are enduring unimaginable physical and psychological suffering.

Animal welfare and protection organizations and millions of people across the world loudly condemn the practise of exporting live animals and many times have called on Governments and international authorities to implement laws and regulations that put an end on live animal transport, in particular to Third Countries.


photos Al Kuwait/Cape Town: Shelley Christians (1), supplied to Daily Maverick (2-3-4)
photo MV Bahijah: Michael Mondello