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Hakol Chai Protests the Ministry of Sports and Culture's Decision to Permit Israelis to Gamble on Horse Racing in the U.K.





Campaign against the Expansion of Racing in Israel

Experts' Statements about Racing

Questions & Answers about Racing

Demo at Ministry of Culture & Sport

Speech in the Knesset

In the Supreme Court of Israel

Ruling of Chief Rabbi Against Racing

Racing Campaign
Press Releases

Racing Campaign
Media Coverage

Help Stop Expansion of Racing in Israel



Racing Cruelties:   The Horror Behind the Glamour

Racing Cruelties: Photos & Videos

Slaughter of Racehorses

In Memory of Ruffian

Horse Abuse & Rescue Overview

Premarin Horses



Slaughter at
the Racetrack

Slaughterhouse: Exposé of Horse Slaughter in the UK





Gambling on horse racing within Israel is not legal, and Hakol Chai introduced a bill in the Knesset that would ban gambling on all sports involving animals. However, the Ministry of Sports and Culture gave permission to the Toto (Israel's Sports Betting Board) to allow Israelis to gamble on horse races outside of Israel, in England and Ireland.


Hakol Chai responded by organizing a protest on November 5th, 2013, in front of the Ministry of Sports and Culture. In connection with the protest, ten Knesset members sent a letter to Minister Limor Livnat, asking her to reverse her decision. Their letter stated that Israelis' gambling on horse racing abroad promotes the cruelties inherent in the racing industry regardless of in which country the races take place. Were these same cruelties performed in Israel, they would violate Israel's Animal Protection Law.


Demonstrators line the streets in front of the Ministry of Sports and Culture


The cruelties include: thousands bred annually, the few fastest picked out to race, most of the rest sent to slaughter (born to die); trained and raced at 2, when they are fastest, but before their bones have hardened, so they suffer catastrophic injuries and must be euthanized; bleeding in the lungs from being pushed beyond their limits, which can be fatal; chronic ulcers, heart attacks and more. Race horses typically end their careers at 6 (other than those who race over jumps), when they are no longer fast enough to win races, and either go to slaughter or are sold from hand to hand in a downward spiral of abuse.


Posters representing tombstones of actual racehorses,
with their photos, date of death, age, and how they died


Israel has no place for the many abused, unwanted horses in the country now. If racing comes to Israel, it will have to build slaughterhouses to kill hundreds of healthy, young horses every year just because they are not fast enough to win races. Raising horses requires an enormous amount of water, which Israel does not have. Israel can find other ways of earning money besides abusing animals.


Minister Livnat responded to the letter from the Knesset members by saying that Israel's Animal Protection Law does not apply to races held outside of Israel so the cruelties to horses in other countries are of no concern to Israelis. She attempted to justify the cruelties on the grounds that money earned from gambling abroad will help promote sports in Israel. She declined to reverse her decision.


Hakol Chai's demonstration was covered by four media channels. Hakol Chai will continue its campaign against gambling on horse racing coming to Israel, and against the misrepresentation of horse racing as a sport, instead of what it actually is—animal abuse.



Left: Hakol Chai representative Reut Reshef is interviewed by Ynet, an Israeli news site
Right: Demonstrators stand at a crosswalk to ensure that drivers see their message