England: Big Problems For Livestock Ships Stranded In the Suez Canal. We Have Major Concerns for Animal Welfare.

27/3/21 – I was hoping that I would not need to write this; especially after the farce involving the EU and animals in transport recently, but there is now another problem yet regarding live animals in maritime shipment, as before.  I will try to summarise from the information we currently have.

We all know about the very recent issues regarding the Karim Allah and the Elbeik which carried livestock for over 3 months; unable to find a port that would accept them – scroll here to see all the posts – Live Transport – World Animals Voice

Livestock vessels currently use the Suez Canal (Egypt) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suez_Canal  to get from the Mediterranean Sea into the Red Sea when going to the Middle East.  The Suez is a small, narrow waterway.

In the past week, a huge 220,000 tonne container carrying ship called the ‘Ever Given’ managed to get jammed in the Canal; thereby blocking off access all other ships following behind.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2021_Suez_Canal_obstruction

Amongst these ships were several livestock carrying vessels; probably 8; Vessels Jersey, Unimar Livestock, Omega Star, Harmony Livestock, Dragon, Lady Maria, Sea Star Livestock, and Gemma star.

Some of these can be seen on one of our recent posts:  England: A Snapshot of the Maritime Livestock Trade – Vessels Currently Shipping Live Animals Around the World. A Disgusting Animal Abuse Issue. – World Animals Voice

All of them left from either Midia (Romania) or Cartagena (Spain).  We have no confirmation at this time, but suspect that the vessels from Romania were carrying sheep (Romania is a big sheep producing nation); and probably cattle being transported from from Spain.  Because of the number of livestock carrying ships involved, and the numbers of animals each are carrying; it is currently impossible to give an overall total for the numbers of animals involved in this crisis. But it will be in the ‘many thousands’.

By Friday 26/3, the maritime traffic jam had grown to more than 200 ships outside the Suez Canal, all affected by this one ship blockade.  With massive international pressure growing to resolve the issue, as well as the huge financial involvement of cargoes carried, the megaship’s owners, Japanese firm Shoei Kisen KK, said 10 tugboats had been deployed to attempt free it.

So, the current situation is that many livestock ships with animals on board are literally stranded in the Suez Canal.  Word from London today (27/3) is that a possible ‘free up and re float’ of the ‘Ever Given’ may take place very soon.  Knowing the situation on the Karim Allah and the Elbeik regarding lack of food and water; we naturally have concerns for the welfare of all animals carried on all the ships.

27/3 – I have checked all ship positions today, it has taken some research time, but I can confirm the following:

Vessel ‘Jersey’ – – registered Togo – en route to Jordan – stuck in Suez Canal.

Vessel ‘Unimar Livestock’ – registered Togo – en route to Jeddah – stuck in Suez Canal.

Vessel ‘Omega Star’ – no details

Vessel ‘Harmony Star’ – sailing under flag of Tanzania – en route to As Suways / Suez Port, Egypt.

Vessel ‘Dragon’ – sailing under the flag of Togolese Rep. – en route to Jordan – stuck in Suez Canal.

Vessel ‘Lady Maria’ – en route to the port of Jeddah – Waiting in Med Sea at entrance to Suez Canal.

Vessel ‘Sea Star Livestock’ – en route to As Suways / Suez Port, Egypt – stuck in Suez Canal.

Vessel ‘Gemma Star’ – no details.

So as you can see with so many large livestock carriers; problems to say the least !

Some of these vessels have been stuck for around 4-5 days now at least.

I hope this gives a small insight into livestock transportation by sea; and the mega problems (feed and watering etc) that just one incident such as this can bring.  Many of these vessels are heading to the Middle East where animals will be ritually slaughtered without any prior stunning.

This is all fuel to our fire in our work to get live animal exports stopped.

Regards Mark

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