Italians join Shark Alliance's appeal to ban 'finning'

EU Parliament to vote on legislation November 22

Italians join Shark Alliance's appeal to ban 'finning'

Brussels, November 20 - A group of 70 high-profile Italian actors, writers, musicians and journalists have added their voice to an appeal by the association Shark Alliance encouraging members of the European Parliament to protect sharks from a practice known as 'finning' when the issue is up for vote November 22. Animal advocacy group Human Society International says that the practice is not only "cruel and inhumane," but that it is "wasteful and unsustainable". To collect valuable shark fins used for soup, fishermen cut the fins off the animal that is usually alive and throw it back into the sea to drown. By discarding the body and keeping just the fins, boats can save space and increase their profits. If adopted, the proposed legislation would prohibit the removal of shark fins onboard vessels and limit the number fished. Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Oman, Panama, South Africa, Taiwan, Britain and the United States all now require that sharks are landed with their fins attached. Environmentalists say that the practice threatens shark populations through over-exploitation and jeopardises the balance of marine ecosystems. Over 100 million sharks are killed for their fins yearly in Europe and across the globe, endangering the creature at the top of the marine food chain.

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