Muslim and Jewish groups are angered by a call from Germany’s federal chamber of veterinarians for a law re-establishing protection against slaughter without stunning. Germany’s main Jewish group rejected Wednesday, July 10, the latest criticism of kosher slaughter practices, and was immediately backed by a Turkish group in Germany speaking on behalf of Muslims. Both Islam and Judaism reject the stunning of animals before slaughter and prescribe that animals be killed by a swift throat cut. Speaking on Germany’s main public broadcaster ARD, Ernst Breitling, president of Germany’s federal chamber of veterinarians had earlier called kosher and halal slaughter “cruelty to animals.” The body has demanded a change in German law to end an exemption for minority butchers which he said had allowed 500,000 sheep to be slaughtered annually in this way.

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