Posted: 9 November 2009. Updated: 9 November 2009
As part of its ongoing lobbying work in the European Parliament pushing for stronger legislative protection for primates, Animal Defenders International (ADI) participated in a special MEP briefing in Brussels on 4 November 2009.
The meeting was held at a crucial time as the European Commission, European Parliament and Council of Ministers were holding trialogue discussions on new rules for animal experimentation throughout Europe. Decisions being considered included whether to restrict primate use to certain areas of research and whether to stop wild monkey trapping by dealers.
Key MEPs examined shocking evidence, filmed by ADI, showing the treatment of monkeys in animal testing labs and in supply facilities, and monkeys being caught in the wild for experiments. A range of different perspectives were aired at the meeting, which was hosted by Raul Romeva MEP (Greens) with Daciana Octavia Sārbu MEP (S & D), also speaking (pictured with ADI Campaigns Director, Tim Phillips).
Delegates also heard how the latest scientific research shows that the monkeys most frequently used in Europe are now rapidly declining throughout their natural range. Approx 10,000 monkeys are used in experiments, many of which are born of wild caught parents so by continuing to use primates in experiments, Europe is fuelling the capture of thousands of wild monkeys to stock breeding farms in Asia.
ADI showed examples of the latest alternatives to experiments on primates and called for the mechanisms under the new rules to ensure the development and implementation of replacements to experiments on animals.
The new Directive for the protection of animals used for scientific purposes, which was proposed in 2008 to replace the outdated EC Directive 86/609/EC, provides the greatest opportunity in over 25 years to influence the use of animals, and in particular primates, in laboratories.
More than half of all MEPs in the European Parliament signed a Declaration in 2007, calling for a ban on the use of great apes and wild caught monkeys and for a timetable to phase out all primate experiments.
Download the Animal Defenders International and Eurogroup Briefings as pdf
Development of Alternative Methods
Authorisation of Projects
Article 10, Phase out capture of wild caught non-human primates
Appendix to Primate Briefing for animal experimentation - Article 10
Article 8, Limiting use of non-human primates