Dutch vote to ban ritual slaughter

The Dutch parliament has passed a bill banning the ritual slaughter of any livestock.

A vote was passed on Tuesday (29 June) which stipulates that animals should be stunned before being slaughtered.

This would contradict Jewish and Muslim slaughter rituals that require an animal to be conscious at the time of death.

The bill must still pass the senate and commentators say it may be unenforceable in its current form.

But the threat of a ban has led to outcry from Jewish and Muslim groups who say it infringes their right to freedom of religion.

They argue ritual slaughter – done by cutting an animal’s throat – is no worse than stunning.