GAIA breekt wrede kooien met elektrische zaag

Vandaag lanceerde GAIA haar nieuwe campagne ‘Stop de kooien’. Met die campagne wil GAIA een einde maken aan het gebruik van wrede (batterij)kooisystemen in de Europese veehouderij. Op het Albertinaplein zaagde de dierenrechtenorganisatie 50 metalen kooien doormidden – een symbolische maar opvallende actie. De campagne ‘Stop de kooien’ maakt deel uit van een Europees burgerinitiatief ‘End the cage age’ gesteund door meer dan 130 organisaties, die ernaar streven 1 miljoen handtekeningen te verzamelen. “Een leven in een kooi is geen dierwaardig bestaan”, aldus GAIA-directeur Ann De Greef. “Dieren in kooien lijden ernstig: ze hebben amper ruimte om te bewegen en kunnen er hun natuurlijke gedrag niet in uiten noch ontplooien.”

Miljoenen dieren in Europa leven in een nachtmerrie: ze slijten hun leven in kleine, kale kooien. De kooien zijn wreed, nutteloos en veroorzaken ernstig leed bij de zeugen, kwartels, konijnen, eenden, ganzen en legkippen. Om die situatie aan de kaak te stellen, organiseerde GAIA vandaag een symbolische actie op het Albertinaplein. 50 metalen kooien werden doormidden gezaagd met een elektrische zaag. De actie markeert de lancering in België van een Europees burgerinitiatief ‘End the cage age’ dat door meer dan 130 organisaties wordt ondersteund. Als de bijhorende petitie 1 miljoen handtekeningen telt, moet de Europese Commissie zich buigen over de eis van de organisaties en gepaste maatregelen nemen.

Een leven zonder waardigheid
Elk jaar worden in Europa maar liefst 370 miljoen dieren in kooien gekweekt. Zeugen liggen vast tussen stalen stangen in zogenaamde kraamhokken waarin amper plaats is voor normaal zorggedrag. Vleeskonijnen en kwartels slijten hun hele leven in kale kooien. Piepjonge kalfjes worden apart opgesloten. Legkippen zitten nog steeds in kooien en eenden en ganzen worden opgesloten om onder dwang gevoerd te worden voor de productie van foie gras. Allemaal hebben ze één ding gemeen: in dergelijke kooien kunnen ze amper bewegen en ‘lijden’ ze een dieronwaardig bestaan dat hoegenaamd niet voldoet aan hun welzijnsbehoeften.

Deze verachtelijke realiteit treft jaarlijks zo’n 4,15 miljoen dieren in België. Zo wordt 39% van alle Belgische leghennen (3,7 miljoen) nog steeds in verrijkte kooien gehouden. De kippen hebben geen ruimte om rond te fladderen, om zich uit te strekken, om hun veren te verzorgen, om te scharrelen, om te rennen, om te vliegen, … . De ernstige beperking van het natuurlijke gedrag in een kooi leidt tot slecht welzijn en dwangneurotisch gedrag. Het gebrek aan beweging zorgt ook voor lichamelijke problemen zoals broze botten.

Moedervarkens moeten gedurende hun leven zoveel mogelijk biggen werpen die als vleesvarkens worden gekweekt. De eerste vijf weken van de dracht worden moedervarkens opgesloten in ligboxen waar ze geen sociale interactie hebben en gedwongen worden zich te ontlasten op hun rustplaats. Ze kunnen niet lopen en zich zelfs niet omdraaien. Die opsluiting creëert allerlei abnormaal dwangneurotisch gedrag zoals stang- en tralie bijten, apathie, broze botten en blaasontstekingen. Voor, tijdens en na de bevalling worden de zeugen opgesloten in kraamhokken waar ze langdurig moeten blijven liggen op een harde, betonnen vloer. Tijdens de bevalling kunnen ze niet eens een paar stappen zetten of zich omdraaien.

“Gereduceerd tot een productie-eenheid leiden deze gevoelige wezens een leven zonder waardigheid, aldus De Greef. In België treft die realiteit 99% van alle zeugen (409 miljoen).

Europees burgerinitiatief
Om een einde te maken aan de kooicultuur die vooral ingebakken zit in de intensieve veeteelt, hebben meer dan 130 organisaties, waaronder GAIA, besloten een Europees burgerinitiatief (ECI) te lanceren. Het initiatief werd recentelijk erkend door de Europese Commissie. Het doel is om in één jaar tijd een miljoen handtekeningen van Europese burgers en ook in zeven Europese landen een minimum aantal handtekeningen te verzamelen. Als GAIA en de andere organisaties daarin slagen, zal de Europese Commissie verplicht zijn de kwestie van de kooicultuur “zorgvuldig” te onderzoeken en vervolgens een “officieel antwoord” te geven. De alliantie van 130 organisaties wil verder gaan en wil, zodra de handtekeningen zijn verzameld, de Commissie ertoe aanzetten een einde te maken aan de wrede kooisystemen in de hele EU. “Ons doel is duidelijk: ervoor zorgen dat kooien, een ramp voor miljoenen dieren in de EU, voor eens voor altijd tot het verleden behoren”, aldus Michel Vandenbosch. Elke regio en lidstaat van de EU kan in principe verder gaan dan de Europese wetgeving. Zo heeft België reeds de kweek van vleeskonijnen in batterijkooien verboden ten voordele van de diervriendelijkere parksystemen. Zodoende is ons land een voorloper in Europa.”




Notonthehighstreet Joins PETA List of Companies Banning Mohair Sale

First-Ever Eyewitness Investigation of Mohair Industry Shows Workers Slowly Killing and Mutilating Crying Goats

London – A recent PETA video exposé of the mohair industry in South Africa – the source of more than 50 per cent of the world’s mohair – has prompted dozens of top international retailers to ban the cruelly obtained material, and online marketplace Notonthehighstreet has just confirmed that it will join them.

The hugely successful website – home to more than 5,000 creative small businesses in the UK – told PETA that the company has informed these partners that it “will be implementing a ban on the sale of products containing mohair through our platform. This will come into effect from the end of 2019.”

PETA’s exposé, which is the first of its kind and encompasses 12 farms visited by a PETA Asia eyewitness in January and February of this year, shows workers dragging goats by the horns and legs and lifting them off the floor by the tail, which could break their spines. Goat kids who were being shorn for the first time cried out in fear. Afterwards, workers threw them across the floor. In August, the National Council of SPCAs filed cruelty-to-animals charges against four angora goat farmers based on evidence from PETA Asia’s investigation. South Africa’s national police force is investigating the farmers as well as shearers and other farmworkers.

“Notonthehighstreet recognises that no throw or pair of gloves is worth the blood, fear, and cries of gentle baby goats – and all other retailers should, too,” says PETA Director of Corporate Projects Yvonne Taylor. “PETA reminds consumers that when shopping online, they should always check products’ material composition carefully to avoid adding any item containing mohair to their shopping baskets.”

ETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear” – notes that many goats’ sensitive ears were mutilated with tattoo pliers, which left them screaming in pain. Shearers – who are paid by volume, not by the hour – worked quickly and carelessly, leaving goats cut up and bleeding. Workers roughly stitched them up without giving them any pain relief.

Farmers admitted that after shearing, many goats die from exposure to the cold wind and rain – 40,000 reportedly died from exposure across South Africa in just one weekend. Unwanted goats also died in agonising ways: on one farm, a worker slowly cut the throats of fully conscious goats with a dull knife and then broke their necks, hacking one animal’s head right off. Others were hauled to an abattoir, where they were electrically shocked, hung upside down, and slashed across the throat.

Notonthehighstreet is one of numerous companies and brands – including ASOS, Marks & Spencer, John Lewis, and H&M – that have agreed to end the use of mohair in their products.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.uk.




Budapest Airport welcomes easyJet’s new London link

Having served the Budapest to London market for over 10 years, Hungary’s capital gateway is delighted to celebrate easyJet’s newest service to the UK city, launching a twice-weekly (Mondays and Fridays) operation to London Southend, adding to its successful London Gatwick operation.

“Traffic between Budapest and London continues to grow, and during the first nine months of 2018, over 1.15 million passengers have travelled between these two key European capitals. With London, and indeed the UK, being the largest city and country markets from Hungary, this new service to London Southend comes at a time when the UK market continues to grow in strength,” states Eszter Almási, Airline Development Manager, Budapest Airport.

An additional enhancement to Budapest’s UK network saw easyJet also introduce a twice-weekly service to Manchester yesterday, seeing weekly capacity to the northwest of the UK grow by 20% this winter.

 




Kamerlid Luykx roept Reynders op om scherp te reageren aan het adres van Pakistaanse regering in de zaak Asia Bibi

Een gerechtshof had woensdag de vrijlating bevolen van de Pakistaanse Asia Bibi, die sinds 2010 in de dodencel zat. Bibi is Christen en werd ter dood veroordeeld voor godslastering in een ruzie met moslimvrouwen. Na de uitspraak over haar vrijlating braken hevige protestbetogingen uit van islamistische groepen die haar dood eisen. Asia Bibi vreest voor haar leven. Zij zou voor haar veiligheid best asiel verleend worden. Verschillende landen hebben dit al aangeboden.

Kamerlid Luykx roept minister Reynders op om te reageren. “De Kamer keurde in 2017 mijn resolutie goed die de regering oproept om bijzondere aandacht te besteden aan religieuze minderheden die verdreven werden uit hun land door extremistische groeperingen. Ook in deze zaak moet de regering het geweld tegen de Christelijke minderheid in Pakistan scherp veroordelen.” De Pakistaanse regering zwicht voor islamitische extremisten en het gerecht zou de hele rechtszaak overdoen. Zowel Asia Bibi als haar echtgenoot moeten beschermd worden.

België kan hen asiel aanbieden. Het zou niet de eerste keer zijn dat de regering zulke actie ondernam. Eerder al reikte staatssecretaris van Asiel en Migratie Theo Francken al humanitaire visa uit aan Christenen in Syrië. “Theo Francken zijn initiatief paste perfect in het kader van mijn resolutie die stelt dat de regering van de bescherming van religieuze minderheden een speerpunt moet maken van het buitenlands beleid. Ook in de zaak Asia Bibi moet de regering optreden.”




The 6th annual edition of MeetingPlanners Russia raised above all expectations!

The annual workshop edition of MeetingPlanners Russia took place this year on 9, 10 and 11 September in the gorgeous five-star property, InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya, situated in the city center of the Russian capital.

The program started on Sunday 9th of September with a dinner for all participating Destinations and Suppliers at Restaurant Chekhonte, in InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya. A panel discussion led by event MC Jonathan Bradshaw brought clarity about the current status of the Russian and CIS MICE markets and through a Q&A session offered insight on how to get the most out of the two business days ahead.
Monday started by offering the opportunity for many worldwide destinations to present what their incredible country or city has to offer. A full day of meetings was scheduled afterwards, with networking and presentation breaks, before enjoying a pleasant end of the day cocktail reception with all participants.

Tuesday began by rewarding some lucky event planners with wonderful prizes. Good mood guaranteed to proceed with the rest of the B2B meetings and presentations before the successful forum ending with the Tuesday forum closing cocktail!

Alberto Gurrola from Grand Coral Beach in Cancun is stating: “The most important part for me is to try to open up relationships. Having a solid 20 appointments in one day plus another 20 appointments the second day, and finding out that the interest for our region is a tangible possibility in the next couple of years is a value like gold. The return of my investment is incredible, we will be here next year! Congratulation for the job well done and everything executed to perfection.’’
The overall satisfaction was clearly noticeable in all the positive feedback received and bookings for the next years forums Europe Congress organizes.

Asking Business Development Director Asya Revina from Europe Congress about the event outcome, she stated: The guaranteed amount of high profile meetings and synergy through the intelligent matchmaking we do prior to the event assured yet again the highest satisfaction possible. The smooth running of the entire program by our team has been flawless. We want to thank all participants for their trust in our organization and are looking forward coming back to Moscow in a year’s time for our 7th edition.’’
Do not miss your chance to join the next edition of MeetingPlanners Russia, on 9 and 10 of September 2019! Until then, Europe Congress is ready to deliver MCE South Europe in Thessaloniki from 21 till 23 October and MCE Central & Eastern Europe in Prague between 17 and 19 of February 2019.

For more information and participation possibilities, please contact Europe Congress on:
Email: info@europecongress.com or Telephone: +420 226 804 080




Wizz Air undertakes Ukrainian expansion from Billund

Already serving Billund Airport from eight destinations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Lithuania, Poland and Romania, and soon Austria, Wizz Air, Central and Eastern Europe’s second largest airline, has confirmed that from 2 March 2019 it will add Ukraine to its list of country markets from Denmark’s second busiest airport. The Ultra Low-Cost Carrier (ULCC) will begin a twice-weekly (Tuesdays and Saturdays) service from Kiev Zhulyany, with the airline operating the 1,540-kilometre city pair using its fleet of 180-seat A320s.

“Wizz Air is one of the most-recognised airline brands in Europe, and we are excited about the prospect of the carrier continuing its expansion in the West Denmark market,” says Jan Hessellund, the new CEO of Billund Airport. “With Vienna being added by Wizz Air later this year, I am delighted to add another capital city to our ever-growing destination map. It’s also fantastic news to provide our loyal customers with a new country market next spring, with access on direct services from their home airport.”

The ULCC is already Billund’s sixth largest carrier (in terms of weekly one-way seats) of the 24 airlines currently flying to the airport this summer. In S18, Billund offers direct flights to 29 different country markets. For S19, Wizz Air will offer 19 weekly frequencies from Denmark’s fastest growing major airport, providing in excess of 3,500 one-way weekly seats to destinations including Bucharest, Cluj-Napoca, Gdansk, Iasi, Tuzla, Vienna, Vilnius, Warsaw Chopin and the confirmed route to Kiev Zhulyany.




Thalys propose une avalanche de petits prix pour sa promotion de fin d’année !

Lundi 5 novembre 2018 — Quoi de plus féérique que de découvrir Paris, Amsterdam ou encore Rotterdam sous leur manteau d’hiver ?

Dès à présent et jusqu’au 25 novembre, Thalys met en vente 41 000 billets à 25€ pour des voyages du 17 décembre 2018 au 24 février 2019 vers Paris et les Pays-Bas.

Dates de réservation : du 6 novembre au 25 novembre 2018
Dates de circulation : du 17 décembre 2018 au 24 février 2019
Tarifs et destinations (*) :
25€ – 35 000 billets vers Paris : en 1h22 depuis Bruxelles, 2h02 depuis Anvers et 2h14 depuis Liège en Standard
25€ – 6 000 billets vers les Pays-Bas : Rotterdam (1h10 depuis Bruxelles) et Amsterdam (1h50) en Standard
Quand visite culturelle rime avec réduction grâce à Thalys !
A l’heure des premières fraicheurs, pourquoi ne pas en profiter pour découvrir quelques musées emblématiques de nos destinations ? Et tout cela à prix réduits sur simple présentation du billet Thalys ! Quelques idées : le Quai Branly à Paris et ses collections d’art du monde (entrée à 7€ au lieu de 10€) ou le célèbre musée Van Gogh d’Amsterdam (20€ au lieu de 23€).

(*) Conditions tarifaires : Aller simple, billets disponibles sur certains trains seulement, sans possibilité d’échange ou de remboursement, sous réserve de disponibilité.
Conditions de vente : vente en ligne sur thalys.com, sur l’application Thalys ainsi que sur tous les canaux de vente habituels Thalys et dans les agences de voyages.




The new Maldives airline will start operations with the latest generation ATRs

Toulouse, October, 2018 – Manta Air, the new domestic airline in the Republic of Maldives, has secured its first two ATR 72-600’s through Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC). The first will be introduced in November 2018, with the second planned to join Manta Air’s fleet before the end of the year. The aircraft will ensure improved connectivity between the beautiful Maldivian atolls. They will be initially operating from the main Velana International Airport, to three airports: Kudahuvadhoo in Dhaalu atoll, Dharavandhoo in Baa atoll and Thimarafushi in Thaa atoll.

Edward Alsford, Chief Operation Officer of Manta Air, declared, “Manta Air is an exciting new domestic airline based in the Republic of Maldives. Our mission is to make flying an enjoyable and effortless experience by ensuring the highest safety standards are established and maintained. We are introducing two brand new ATR72-600’s aircraft into the Maldives. This demonstrates Manta Air’s dedication to high standards, and our commitment offers the best levels of service for our passengers. These aircraft benefit from having the most modern and comfortable turboprop cabin. Manta Air has taken the unusual step of removing a row of seats to provide our passengers with additional legroom in both economy and business class.”

Martin Møller, Chairman of NAC, declared: “We are pleased to see our first ATR 72-600 aircraft being introduced in the Maldives and contributing to the further development of the air connectivity in this region. The ATR 72-600s perfectly match the requirements for short-haul travel in terms of low operating costs, comfort and ability to take-off and land at small airfields.”

Stefano Bortoli, CEO of ATR, added, “It is a special occasion to be part of the launch of a new airline such as Manta Air. Their choice highlights their confidence in the ATR 72-600 as the best aircraft for their successful daily operations in the Maldives. It demonstrates once again the value of ATR for connecting island communities whilst allowing airlines to take advantages of its unbeatable economics and comfort.”

The eco-efficient ATR 72-600s will operate on domestic routes from runways as short as 1200 meters, thanks to their unmatched take-off and landing performance. The aircraft will feature a very comfortable and spacious cabin, with an increased legroom seat, offering a new travel experience across the Maldives.

 

About the ATR 72-600:

Passenger capacity: 68-78 seats

Engines: Pratt & Whitney 127M

Maximum power at take-off: 2,750 horse power per engine

Maximum weight at take-off: 23,000 Kg

Maximum load: 7,500 Kg

Maximum range with full passenger load: 900 nautical miles (1,665 Km)

About Nordic Aviation Capital:
NAC is the industry’s leading regional aircraft lessor serving over 70 airline customers in 49 countries. The company provides aircraft to well-established carriers such as British Airways, Air Canada, LOT, Azul, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Garuda, Flybe, Aeroméxico and airBaltic as well as major regional carriers including Air Nostrum and Widerøe. NAC’s current fleet of almost 500 aircraft includes E170, E175, E190, E195, ATR 42, ATR 72, Bombardier Dash 8, CRJ900, CRJ1000 and A220. NAC is the largest owner and lessor of both ATR aircraft in the world.

 

About ATR:

ATR is a European manufacturer of turboprops and the world leader on the regional aviation market. ATR designs, builds and delivers modern regional aircraft to a customer base of more than 200 airlines in nearly 100 countries. The ATR 42 and 72 are the world’s best sellers in the aircraft segment of less than 90 seats. Driven by the desire for continuous improvement, ATR builds technologically cutting-edge turboprops that are both comfortable and versatile, used by air carriers to broaden their horizons and create more than 100 new routes every year. By comparison with other turboprops, ATRs offer advantages of 40% in terms of fuel consumption, 20% in terms of cost per journey and 10% in terms of seat costs, while offering the lowest levels of noise emissions. ATR is a joint venture equally owned by Airbus and Leonardo, two major players in the aerospace industry. Backed by a vast international customer support network, ATR offers innovative solutions and services for its customers and operators around the world. For more information, please visit http://www.atr-aircraft.com.




The 6th annual edition of MeetingPlanners Russia raised above all expectations!

The annual workshop edition of MeetingPlanners Russia took place this year on 9, 10 and 11 September in the gorgeous five-star property, InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya, situated in the city center of the Russian capital.

The program started on Sunday 9th of September with a dinner for all participating Destinations and Suppliers at Restaurant Chekhonte, in InterContinental Moscow Tverskaya. A panel discussion led by event MC Jonathan Bradshaw brought clarity about the current status of the Russian and CIS MICE markets and through a Q&A session offered insight on how to get the most out of the two business days ahead.

Monday started by offering the opportunity for many worldwide destinations to present what their incredible country or city has to offer. A full day of meetings was scheduled afterwards, with networking and presentation breaks, before enjoying a pleasant end of the day cocktail reception with all participants.
Tuesday began by rewarding some lucky event planners with wonderful prizes. Good mood guaranteed to proceed with the rest of the B2B meetings and presentations before the successful forum ending with the Tuesday forum closing cocktail!

Alberto Gurrola from Grand Coral Beach in Cancun is stating: “The most important part for me is to try to open up relationships. Having a solid 20 appointments in one day plus another 20 appointments the second day, and finding out that the interest for our region is a tangible possibility in the next couple of years is a value like gold. The return of my investment is incredible, we will be here next year! Congratulation for the job well done and everything executed to perfection.’’

The overall satisfaction was clearly noticeable in all the positive feedback received and bookings for the next years forums Europe Congress organizes.

Asking Business Development Director Asya Revina from Europe Congress about the event outcome, she stated: The guaranteed amount of high profile meetings and synergy through the intelligent matchmaking we do prior to the event assured yet again the highest satisfaction possible. The smooth running of the entire program by our team has been flawless. We want to thank all participants for their trust in our organization and are looking forward coming back to Moscow in a year’s time for our 7th edition.’’

Do not miss your chance to join the next edition of MeetingPlanners Russia, on 9 and 10 of September 2019! Until then, Europe Congress is ready to deliver MCE South Europe in Thessaloniki from 21 till 23 October and MCE Central & Eastern Europe in Prague between 17 and 19 of February 2019.

For more information and participation possibilities, please contact Europe Congress on: Email: info@europecongress.com or Telephone: +420 226 804 080




Future Travel Experience Asia EXPO 2018 Preview

Future Travel Experience (FTE) Asia EXPO will return to the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore on 13-14 November 2018and will bring together more than 1,750 air transport industry executives representing airlines, airports, vendors, startups, government agencies and a variety of other influential industry players.

Delivered with the official support of Changi Airport Group (CAG) and the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX), the show will be the biggest FREE to attend passenger experience and business performance expo in Asia.

Attendees will have access to a raft of complimentary features, including a huge exhibition of the latest products designed to help airlines and airports improve passenger experiences, reduce costs, increase revenues and optimise efficiency both at the airport and in-flight. The exhibitor list includes the likes of Panasonic Avionics, Cisco, digEcor, Rockwell Collins, AirFi, Embross, Idemia, ICM, NEC and Haneda Robotics Lab, to name just a few. A selection of pioneering startups will also be presenting their latest solutions in the JetBlue Technology Ventures Startup Showcase.

The event will also host the inaugural Onboard Hospitality Forum Asia, a unique showcase of the very latest hospitality and catering-related products and services. SATS, Formia, Bayart Innovations, Linstol and SkyLights are among the confirmed exhibitors in this exciting NEW zone.

In addition, all visitors will have FREE access to the EXPO Stage, which will host education sessions led by the International Airport Transport Association (IATA), the International Flight Services Association (IFSA) and Onboard Hospitality. The latter has also teamed up with Asia-Pacific On-board Travel (APOT) to host a one-of-a-kind Street Food Festival within the show.

As well as the above features, the event will play host to the FTE Asia Awards presentation ceremony and include a high-level Premium Conference, both of which are FREE to attend for airline and airport representatives. There are many organisations already confirmed to speak, including the likes of: Changi Airport Group, Jetstar Asia, McLaren Applied Technologies, Google, Singapore Airlines, Peach, Cathay Pacific, Philippine Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines, SriLankan Airlines, Malaysia Airports, Bengaluru International Airport, Auckland Airport, KLM, Yotel, Vistara, Cebu Pacific, plus many more.

Make sure you don’t miss out on FTE Asia EXPO 2018, Asia’s biggest FREE to attend passenger and business performance expo – 13-14 November, Singapore.

Visit the event website:

www.futuretravelexperience.com/fteasia/