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McCartney wants EU ban on seal products

Paul McCartney is asking animal lovers around the world to pressure the European Union to proceed with a ban on seal products.

Music legend Paul McCartney is once again speaking out against the annual seal hunt on Canada's East Coast.

In an appeal distributed Thursday by the international and United States humane societies, the former Beatle is asking animal lovers around the world to pressure the European Union to proceed with a ban on seal products.

The European Union is accepting public comments on the proposed ban until Feb. 13, and McCartney said it's a chance for people everywhere to help end the commercial slaughter of seals.

"Like me, you've probably seen the horrifying images of helpless baby seals being beaten and shot for their fur," McCartney said in the statement.

"Wounded seals left to suffer in agony. Conscious pups sliced open. And the reason for their pain? So that someone can sell their fur."

McCartney and his former wife, Heather Mills, travelled to the harp seal nursery on the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2006 to protest the annual hunt, describing it as senseless brutality.

During an appearance with McCartney on CNN's Larry King Live, Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams called the pop icon misinformed.

"They target us because we're a smaller province and it's a smaller industry," the premier said at the time.

"They're not going to take on the beef industry. A seal pup makes a great photo op. "

McCartney said a ban on the trade of all seal products in the EU could spell the end of many commercial seal hunts.

Governments should find employment alternatives for seal hunters and compensate them for lost income, he said.

"A European Union ban on all seal product trade would force nations where seal hunting has taken place to invest in real alternatives — jobs that will provide safe and sustainable futures," he said.

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