Hong Kong, Jan 16, 2007: Animal rights campaigners brought chaos to Hong Kong's annual fashion week expo with a series of anti-fur protests that upstaged designers and models gathered for the international event.
A catwalk invasion by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) activists yesterday night brought one of the
event's opening shows to a sudden halt.
Four protesters stepped onto the catwalk while models showed off designs by local creators Cecilia Yau and Peter Lau, and unfurled banners that read "Cecilia and Peter: Fur scum" and "Fur hurts".
The protesters were dragged off the platform and ejected from the show chanting anti-fur slogans.
A spokesman for expo organisers -- the Trade Development Council (TDC)-- said it was obliged to allow fur-based exhibitors into the show as Hong Kong had no ban on the use of pelts.
However, he stressed that the TDC had gone to great lengths to ensure all exhibitors who use fur had sourced their pelts from reputable stockists.
"We checked with the Hong Kong Fur Association that all fur exhibitors were responsible," said Lawrence Yau.
"Our regulations are very strict -- if they get the fur from unlicensed sources, or if they lower the image of the industry in any way, then we
wo't have them here."
PETA were back on the attack today, rallying outside global fashion label Burberry's Downtown Hong Kong store in protest at its sale of fur.
There was no comment available from Yau, Lau or Burberry.