A ban on the export of livestock for slaughter has been called for, by a group of Australian actors, authors and musicians.
Names, including Hugo Weaving, Daniel Johns and Tim Winton, have signed an ad funded by welfare activists Animals Australia in The Australian newspaper.
Entertainer Tracy Bartram is one of those calling on the Prime Minister and Opposition Leader to ban the trade, because she says it’s cruel.
"We want the community to have a think about it, because it’s not just about us, it’s about us trying to offer an alternative and an alternative way of thinking.
"We’ve been sending these animals to the Middle East for 20 years and we know that we haven’t seen any evidence of improvement.
"Some of these countries haven’t even given women rights, so why would they give animals rights – do you know what I am saying?"
The president of the Sheepmeats Council Ian Feldtmann says he’s not fazed by the ad.
He hopes those who’ve signed their names recognise that steps have been taken to improve animal welfare conditions in the Middle East.
"Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I would assume that people would gather information and find out what’s being done in the Middle East by the industry to improve animal welfare; and from that I would assume they then form an opinion."