Universe dated Sunday, August 16, 1998
More than 2,000 animal rights activists took part in a protest march
earlier this week to highlight their claim that Labour has "betrayed"
animals since coming to power.
Hundreds of protesters, many
carrying banners bearing slogans including 'Ban Bloodsports' and 'Tony
B'Liar', marched through central London blowing whistles and chanting in
support of animal welfare.
The march, across Westminster Bridge
and through Whitehall, ended in Trafalgar Square, where a host of
speakers, including TV writer Carla Lane, staged a rally.
James, a member of the Animals Betrayed Coalition, who helped organise
the Animals Betrayed March, said hundreds of people had traveled from
all over the country to take part.
He added: "Before last year's
election, the Labour Party made a number of promises and they have
failed to keep them, so we feel very strongly that they have betrayed
"We hope today's march will make them sit up and take
note because because the majority of people in this country are against
all types of animal cruelty, including hunting, which should be banned
as soon as possible."
Many of the protesters voiced their anger
at the police presence, but the majority of demonstrators were in a
A spokesman from Scotland Yard later said one man
was arrested during the demonstration for what was believed to be a
public order related offence.
Frances Russell, a member of the
Twickenham Animal Rights Movement, said she felt very strongly that the
Government had failed to keep its promises.
"The Government got
elected on the basis of promises that turned out to be hollow. They are
still giving out fur licences, there are still animal experiments for
warfare and hunting has not been banned. They are just a bunch of
conmen," she said.
John Hicks, organiser of the march and head
of International Animal Rescue, who was due to speak during the rally,
said Labour had failed to deliver on promises made in opposition to ban
hunting, stop fur farming and set up a Royal Commission on vivisection.
But League Against Cruel Sports spokesman David Coulthread told the
BBC Radio 4 Today programme that the march was a mistake - more could be
achieved by working behind the scenes with backbench MP's, who were
anxious to get these measures implemented and were talking to ministers.
"We believe there's tremendous political will and we are working
with the Government," he said.
Protesters were today also
holding an exhibition about animal cruelty at the Hippodrome, central
Reproduced with thanks.
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