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Movie legend Brigitte Bardot has made a plea to French President Nicolas Sarkozy, urging him to ban seal products.

The 74-year-old actress has penned an open letter to the French leader, asking him to ban seal products because they are made from animals killed in a cruel way.

“There is no alternative but to ban… the importation, trade, exportation and the transit of any product from seal hunting and without any derogation other than that accorded to the Inuit populations,” she wrote. She went on to tell Sarkozy that recent measures taken by the major seal skin exporters in Canada to stop accusations that it allowed unnecessary cruelty to animals were not enough.

Bardot retired from acting in 1974. In 1986 she established the Brigitte Bardot Foundation for the Welfare and Protection of Animals and raised three million French francs to fund the foundation by auctioning off jewelry and personal belongings. Since then she has dedicated herself to animal welfare issues, and has made countless donations to the cause, including $140,000 for a mass sterilization and adoption program for Bucharest’s stray dogs.

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