120 Irish lambs die while on flight to Singapore
An international farm animal charity has condemned the death of 120 Irish lambs from heat stress on a flight to Singapore.
The animals were part of a shipment of 1,704 Irish lambs being sent to the Asian city to be slaughtered at the Eid al-Adha Muslim celebration.
However, when the plane landed at Changi Airport on Sunday morning, officials from Singapore's Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority discovered that more than one hundred had died.
The Republic's Department of Agriculture, and authorities in Singapore have commenced separate investigations.
A spokesperson said: "Initial indications are that the animals may have succumbed to heat stress as a result of a problem that arose during a scheduled refuelling stop en route."
Philip Lymbery, CEO of Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), a leading farm animal welfare charity which highlighted the plight of Irish lambs being sent to Singapore for slaughter in 2014, claims the suffering the lambs endured on their journey "is unthinkable".
"It is appalling that Irish animals are still being sent on such long journeys, to countries with animal welfare standards which fall far short of what is acceptable."
He said they faced horrific mistreatment and cruel, prolonged deaths at such festivals.
"They face conditions that would not only be illegal in the EU, but often breach even basic internationally recognised recommendations on slaughter," he said.