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Joline takes 14 hours to travel from Ramsgate to Calais

By Jack Dyson

A controversial boat used to export livestock has taken almost 14 hours to travel from Ramsgate to Calais.

The Joline, which was believed to be ferrying Scottish calves across the Channel, left the East Kent port at just before midnight.

But just after 6.30am this morning - and a short distance away from Calais - it stopped moving for more than four hours.

Video courtesy of Kent Animal Defenders

The craft finally docked at about 2.30pm.

Animal rights campaigners have expressed their concerns for the welfare of the calves.

Ian Birchall, of Kent Against Animal Live Exports, said: "Legally, they should be travelling for a maximum of nine hours, have a minimum of an hour's break and then be unloaded for the next 24 hours.

The Joline, the flat bottomed Russian tank carrier now exporting live animals
The Joline, the flat bottomed Russian tank carrier now exporting live animals

"This exposes them to all kinds of risks. It's impossible to feed and water them correctly, calves are very vulnerable at that age and there's a danger they could get trampled on.

"It's very windy, the sea is very choppy and so the Joline has been shunting around waiting to get into the Port of Calais for ages."

Mr Birchall saw the calves getting loaded into a vehicle at Lydden Court yesterday and believes they are being taken to Spain.

"They are headed for southern Spain," he said.

A terrified calf in the back of the lorry. Photo: Emma Jade Easton (4871215)
A terrified calf in the back of the lorry. Photo: Emma Jade Easton (4871215)

"The males will go into the veal system and the females will go for fattening, breeding or onto slaughter in North Africa."

The reason for the delay is not yet known.

The Coastguard and the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs have been approached for a comment.

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