by Alicia Graef
August 9, 2012
A bill brought before the
Knesset at the end of July may, if passed, make Israel the first country in
the world to ban the sale of fur, reports the Jerusalem Post.
bill, drafted by MK Ronit Tirosh (Kadima) in conjunction with the
Israel-based International Anti-Fur Coalition, received the support of eight
Knesset members from across the political spectrum -- Tirosh, Eitan Cabel
(Labor), Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz), Yoel Hasson (Kadima), Dov Henin (Hadash),
Miri Regev (Likud), Nino Abesadze (Kadima) and Masud Ganaim (United Arab
An independent opinion poll conducted for the International
Anti-Fur Coalition and Israeli animal rights group Let Animals Live found 86
percent of Israelis believe killing animals for their fur is morally wrong
and 79 percent would support a nationwide ban.
efforts to ban fur sales in Israel received opposition from the fur
industry, which doesn't want anything cutting into its profits, or to see
anyone pave the way towards an end to the fur trade, but also by the
Orthodox Jewish community, whose cultural headdress, called a shtreimel, is
made of fur.
This time around, the bill will allow for the sale of
fur used in science or to express cultural identity.
The text of the
bill explains that there is no longer any necessity for fur, as synthetic
fabrics heat much more efficiently, and fur is now simply a fashion item and
status symbol. A ban on the sale of fur within Israel would provide animals
protection according to the Animal Welfare Law, and would be in accordance
with the values of human compassion and Judaism, the bill text says.
"Fighting for people's consciousness is a daily undertaking, and this
legislation may yet save millions of animals. It's time to do this at last
and finally end the fur trade in Israel. Such legislation should gain
immense respect for Israel and its citizens. Another important point to note
is that unlike the first bill, proposed by MK Ronit Tirosh, the new bill
doesn't suggest a ban on fur imports, hence the bill is an entirely internal
matter and any intervention by foreign furriers will be neither ethical nor
justified," said Jane Halevy, chairperson of the International Anti-Fur