For Immediate Release:
17 December 2018
Worker Who Risked Job to Record Plight of Animals Honoured for His Brave Exposé of Export Horrors
Sydney – Aboard the live-export vesselAwassi Express, trainee navigator Faisal Ullah broke the rules of his employment when he not only took along a camera but also shared with the world the resulting footage showing the suffering of the 64,000 sheep on the ship – an act of bravery and compassion that’s earned him the honour of being named PETA’s 2018 Person of the Year.
“Faisal Ullah spoke up when he saw the injustice being committed against these animals,” says PETA Campaigns Adviser Mimi Bekhechi. “PETA is honouring him for shining a much-needed light on the rarely seen abuse and neglect that occur aboard these vessels. Because of his actions, many Australians have been inspired to be more vocal about ending live export once and for all – and the government is increasingly being forced to listen.”
Ullah, whose undercover footage aired exclusively on popular current-affairs programme 60 Minutes, said that he was compelled to film what he saw “because of the suffering of the animals, the severity of the suffering …. I could not tolerate that. I was unable to keep it to myself only.”
The shocking images, which quickly went viral in April, revealed that sheep aboard theAwassi Expresshad so little room to move that many couldn’t reach food or water. During the journey from Fremantle, Western Australia, some 2,400 died from heat stress – a figure almost double that of the already unacceptable “industry standard”.
PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” – notes that in 2017, Australia exported a total of almost 2 million live animals and that, while eyewitness footage like this helps to keep the issue in the public eye, the only real solution is an end to the industry.
For more information about the call for an end to live export, visit PETA.org.au.