A petition demanding an outright ban on slaughtering animals without stunning them first has attracted more than 100,000 backers - but the Government insisted it still had 'no intention' of outlawing religious slaughter.

Vets chief John Blackwell vowed to continue the fight, warning ministers they 'simply cannot ignore the strength of public feeling' over animal welfare and a failure to let consumers know how their meat was killed.

Campaigners will now press for a fresh Commons debate on the issue after quickly exceeding the six-figure threshold required on the parliamentary petition site to trigger a possible time slot.

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