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French anti-meat activists jailed for vandalising butchers

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LILLE, France (Reuters) – French anti-meat activists who vandalised butchers shops and restaurants serving meat have been jailed by a court in Lille, northern France.

Over the past months, several groups of militant vegans and vegetarians have attacked and vandalised slaughterhouses, steak restaurants and shops selling meat, arguing that eating meat is cruel and unnecessary.

A 23-year-old man and a 26-year-old woman, who are a couple, were jailed for 10 and six months respectively for some 15 attacks between December 2018 and February, including breaking shop windows and attempts to set shops on fire with cans of gasoline.

Two other people received suspended jail terms for aiding and abetting anti-meat protests.

Compared with Germany, the Netherlands and some northern European countries, vegetarianism is relatively rare in France, where beef stew, pork chops and coq au vin are popular dishes.

(Reporting by Pierre Savary; Writing by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Alison Williams)

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