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New bid to ban trade in cat and dog fur

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European Parliament
Animal Rights

BRUSSELS, Belgium (Reuters) -- Think twice about buying a tiny cat soft toy this Christmas -- it could be made from dog fur.

The call was made by members of the European Parliament, who launched a campaign on Wednesday for a ban on imports of cat and dog fur across the 15-nation European Union.

"This cat soft toy is made from the butchery of dogs in China ... the citizens of Europe want a ban on this evil trade," Scottish Conservative assembly member Struan Stevenson told a news conference, displaying items made from pet pelts.

He also showed a fur coat made from the skins of 42 German Shepherd puppies and a rug made from the fur of four Golden Retriever dogs -- goods bought in the EU and sold under false labels.

More than two million cats and dogs are killed in China each year for their fur, animal rights groups say.

Stevenson described how dogs, traditionally man's best friend, have their abdomens slit and are left to bleed to death in China, referring to a secretly filmed animal rights video.

"I'm a farmer and not a sissy about blood but I couldn't sleep for two nights after seeing the tape," he said.

Copyright 2003 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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