Israel has announced plans to ban the use of animal fur and skin. In announcing the new regulations, the minister for environmental protection Gila Gamliel termed the use of animal fur and skin, particularly in the fashion industry, as “immoral.” If the ban does become law, anyone intending to use such products in the country will have to apply for a permit, which will only be issued under special circumstances.

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The decision has been widely welcomed by conservationists and animal rights groups around the world. PETA and Humane Society of the United States have made statements that they support the move. This fur ban would make Israel the first country in the world to enact such a policy. Today, only a couple of cities in the U.S. and Brazil have banned the sale of animal fur.

Related: Nordstrom to end the sale of fur and animal skins

Once the fur ban is enacted, any person who wishes to buy or sell fur in Israel must apply for a permit under strict regulations. Permits will only be considered in special cases including scientific research, education or religious/traditional purposes.

“The fur industry causes the killing of hundreds of millions of animals around the world, and involves indescribable cruelty and suffering,” said Gamliel. “Utilising the skin and fur of wildlife for the fashion industry is immoral.”

According to Elisa Allen, director of PETA, Israel has made the right choice in moving to ban the use of fur in the fashion industry. Allen said that Israel should be applauded “for recognizing that the trade-in coats, pom-poms, and other frivolous fashion items made from wild animals’ fur offend the values held by all decent citizens.”

The fur ban will include fines of up to $22,000 or one year in prison per violation.

Via BBC and VegNews

Image via Markus Spiske