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  MPs back ban on fox hunting
Updated 01 July 2003, 08.14
MPs backed a ban on hunting with dogs
MPs have voted for a total ban on fox hunting but the bill must now be passed by the House of Lords, where it's likely to face stiff opposition.

A huge majority of 208 MPs backed the ban - with 362 voting for it, and 154 voting against it.

The vote came after the Government changed its plans for the Hunting Bill.

It originally proposed to allow fox hunting to continue under very strict rules.

Pro-hunt campaigners protested outside the House Of Commons

But, after complaints from many MPs, the House of Commons was allowed to vote for an outright ban.

Rural Affairs Minister Alun Michael urged MPs not to back a total ban, but many of them ignored him.

However, the bill must pass through several more stages if it is to beome law.

It will now be sent to a committee of MPs, who will look at the changes.

Then it must be passed by the House Of Lords, which has always been against a hunting ban.

The Scottish Parliament banned fox hunting in 2002.

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