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Animal Rebellion will occupy the UK’s largest inland fish market tomorrow in a bid to highlight what it describes as the devastating impact of fishing.
The action is part of global two-week protests led by Extinction Rebellion to put pressure on the government to act on the climate emergency.
Animal Rebellion wants to ‘bring attention to the exploitation of fishes and unsustainable fishing practices which are killing our oceans’ and is planning peaceful actions including a vigil for the lost lives of the fish and disruption to the market.
“To many, eating fish is seen as the healthy choice but just as land animals suffer, so do fish, who think, make friends, and feel pain. But their suffering goes unnoticed,” said Esther Salomon, a spokesperson for Animal Rebellion.
“At London’s Billingsgate Market, thousands of fish, stolen daily from their ocean homes, lie dead or dying.
“Many will have suffocated slowly when pulled aboard fishing vessels, whilst thousands of others remain alive as they’re transported by lorry to the market, where they’ll be gutted or boiled alive.”
“We know we are causing disruption to the daily lives of these workers and we are sorry for that. But they will have no jobs with dead oceans,” added Animal Rebellion spokesperson Suzy Bond.
“What I’d like to know is why aren’t UK fisheries raging at the Government for unfair fishing quotas? Why aren’t the traders at Billingsgate Market furious with the Government for their failing industry?
“When Michael Gove introduced the Fisheries Bill in the Commons last year, it was applauded as a Government’s pledge to take back control of British waters but when blocking the initiative, Jacob Rees-Mogg couldn’t have cared less that it could have been worth an additional £540 million-a-year and 5,000 new jobs to the seafood industry, helping ordinary fishing communities out of poverty did he. Where’s Billingsgate’s fury at this?”
Activists will begin their protest at 4am tomorrow, obstructing the entrance of the market throughout its working day (4:30am-8:30am).