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Animal Defenders International

Ich bin ein primat –

Posted: 24 April 2007

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Push for Primate Test Ban takes off on international Lab Animal Day, 24 April 07

With unprecedented support from MEPs and leading EU statesmen for an end to
experiments on primates across Europe, Lab Animal Day sees the launch of a new Written Declaration, 40/2007, in Strasbourg, calling for a ban on the use of Great Apes (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, orangutans) and wild-caught primates, together with a commitment for a phase-out of all primate use within the EU.

The new Declaration is launched today on April 24th by the National Anti-Vivisection Society and Animal Defenders international, with support from MEPs at a reception in the European Parliament.

The launch showcases evidence on the use of primates in research and the advanced scientific replacement techniques that are available, and which would put the EU at the forefront of modern scientific research.

As our closest relatives, chimpanzees and bonobos are known to share over 98% of human genes. Using tools and with close family ties, they display comparable emotions to humans. However, despite the enormous similarities, at the genetic and cellular level there are crucial differences between humans and primates, which can have crucial outcomes in biomedical research.

Recent research has revealed fundamental disparities in the immune systems and in the brain between humans and chimpanzees, which make them poor predictors of human reactions. There are key differences between all of the monkey species.

Europe uses 10,000 primates in research each year, with the UK being the largest user, followed by France and Germany.

Increased public concern about laboratory primates was reflected in the findings of a 2006 European Commission Survey. A staggering 80% of the respondents considered the use of primates in experiments as “not acceptable”. The survey formed part of a public consultation for the revision of Directive 86/609/EC on the use of animals in scientific research.

Jan Creamer, chief executive of NAVS commented: “There seems no justification to delay action on this issue, since the matter of captive breeding has been addressed since the 1970s. Currently, the minority of primates used in EU labs are wild-caught so a wild caught ban could be implemented immediately. The importance of such a ban would be its influence over other users, and, importantly, would restrict primate use and further expansion of the trade.

MEP support
The new Declaration already has cross-party, international support and is sponsored
by John Bowis (UK – European People’s Party), Martine Roure (France – Party of
European Socialists), Jens Holm (Sweden – European United Left), Rebecca Harms (Germany – Greens) and Mojca Drcar Murko (Slovenia – Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe).

88 MEPs rallied to support the Declaration ( see list) MEP Sajjad Karim, sponsor of the Declaration, has campaigned tirelessly in Brussels and Strasbourg and contacted the European Commission calling for a ban. MEPs David Martin and Robert Evans have spoken to the press and alerted their comrades of the European Socialist Party. John Bowis, Conservative MEP, Portuguese MEP Paulo Casaca, and Green MEPs Caroline Lucas and Swedish MEPs Carl Schlyter and Jens Holm have all lobbied within their respective parties, amongst colleagues, and spoken out in the media backing the campaign.

The 86/609 consultation acknowledges the suffering of these animals and that some restriction is appropriate. Also the use of great apes is at an all time low, six apes used in 1999, none in 2002, so a ban would be a relatively simple process”, Jan Creamer continued. “It would establish a very important precedent, prevent a future rise in use, and would be important for ending experiments on chimps in countries where significant numbers remain in labs such as the USA and Japan.

___________________________ENDS______________________________

NOTES TO EDITORS

Written Declaration 40/2007
The new Declaration urges the Commission, the Council of Ministers
and the European Parliament to use their vision process of Directive 86/609/EC
as an opportunity prioritise ending the use of apes and wild caught monkeys in scientific experiments and establish a timetable for replacing the use of all primates in scientific experiments with alternatives.

88 MEP Signatories for NAVS Written Declaration 64/2006

UEN
1.Mogens Camre (UEN/DK)
2.Cristiana Muscardini (UEN/It)
3.Wieslaw Stefan Kuc (UEN, Poland)
4.Zdzislaw Zbigniew Podkanski (UEN, Poland)

EPP
5.Den Dover (EPP-ED, UK)
6.John Bowis (EPP-ED, UK)
7.Charles Tannock (EPP-ED, UK)
8.Struan Stevenson (EPP-ED, UK)
9.Eugenijus Gentvilas (EPP-ED, Lithuania)
10.Richard Seeber (EPP-ED, Austria)
11.Christopher Beazley (EPP-ED, UK)
12.Philip Bushill-Matthews (EPP-ED, UK)
13.Giles Chichester (EPP-ED, UK)
14.Piia-Noora Kauppi (EPP-ED, Finland)
15.Gay Mitchell (EPP-ED, Ireland)
16.James Nicholson (EPP-ED, UK)
17.Neil Parish (EPP-ED, UK)
18.Renate Sommer (EPP-ED, Germany)
19.Geoffrey Van Orden (EPP-ED, UK)

EUL/NGL
20.Erik Meijer (EUL/NGL, NL)
21.Vladimir Remek (EUL/NGL, CZ)
22.Eva-Britt Svensson (EUL/NGL, SW)
23.Adamos Adamou (EUL/NGL, Cyprus)
24.Vittorio Agnoletto (EUL/NGL, It)
25.Vicenzo Aita (EUL/NGL, It)
26.Jens Holm (EUL/NGL, Sweden)
27.Roberto Musacchio (EUL/NGL, It)
28.Giusto Catania (EUL/NGL, It)
29.Umberto Guidoni (EUL/NGL, It)
30.Dimitrios Papadimoulis (EUL/NGL, Greece)
31.Vladimir Remek (EUL/NGL, Czech Republic)

PES
32.Donata Gottardi (PES, IT)
33.Jorg Leichtfried (PES, AT)
34.David Martin (PES, UK)
35.Bart Staes (PES, BE)
36.Catherine Stihler (PES, UK)
37.Paolo Casaca (PES, PT)
38.Robert Evans (PES, UK)
39.Emanuel Jardim Fernandes (PES, PT)
40.Glyn Ford (PES, UK)
41.Lidia Geringer de Oedeberg (PES, PO)
42.Glenis Willmott (PES, UK)
43.Michael Cashman (PES, UK)
44.Richard Corbett (PES, UK)
45.Edite Estrela (PES, PT)
46.Neena Gill (PES, UK)
47.Michel Rocard (PES, FR)
48.Martine Roure (PES, FR)
49.Maria Martinez Sornosa (PES, ESP)
50.Herbert Bosch (PES, Austria)
51.Stephen Hughes (PES, UK)
52.Jamila Madeira (PES, Portugal)
53.Brian Simpson (PES, UK)
54.Peter Skinner (PES, UK)

ALDE
55.Chris Davies (ALDE, UK)
56.Sharon Bowles (ALDE, UK)
57.Mojca Drcar Murko (ALDE, SL)
58.Saj Karim (ALDE, UK)
59.Margarita Starkevicuite (ALDE, Lithuania)
60.Jelko Kacin (ALDE, Slovenia)
61.Alxander Alvaro (ALDE, Germany)
62.Elspeth Attwooll (ALDE, UK)
63.Elizabeth Lynne (ALDE, UK)
64.Bill Newton-Dunn (ALDE, UK)
65.Graham Watson (ALDE, UK)

Greens
66.Jean-Luc Bennahmias (Green/EFA, FR)
67.Jill Evans (Greens/EFA, UK)
68.Rebecca Harms (Green/EFA, DE)
69.Gisela Kallenback (Green/EFA, DE)
70.Carl Schlyter (Green/EFA, SW)
71.Sepp Kusstascher (Green/EFA, IT)
72.Jean Lambert (Green/EFA, UK)
73.Caroline Lucas (Green/EFA, UK)
74.Johannes Voggenhuber (Green, Austria)
75.Statu Hassi (Green, Finland)
76.Alyn Smith (Green, UK)
77.Ian Hudghton (Green, UK)
78.Marie-Anne Isler Beguin (Green, FR)
79.Cem Ozdemir (Green, Germany)
80.Heide Ruhle (Green, Germany)

ID (Independence and Democracy)
81. Paul-Marie Couteaux (ID, FR)
82. Helene Goudin (ID, Sweden)
83. Georgios Karatzaferis (ID, Greece)
84.Kathy Sinnot, (ID, Ireland)
85.Michael Henry Nattrass (ID (UKIP), UK)

NI (Non-attached members)
86.Lydia Schenardi (Front National, FR)
87.Jim Allister (Democratic Unionist Party, UK)
88.Hans-Peter Martin (NI, Austria)

Berlin Declaration


In 2005, with 25 other groups, ADI signed up to a declaration calling for an end to the use of primates in research. The groups had gathered in Berlin for a congress on alternatives to animals in research. After the Congress, ADI called on other organizations and individuals worldwide to sign up to what is now called The Berlin Declaration – 70 groups have now signed.

The Berlin Declaration states: “Animal protection organisations and scientists have united to call for an end to the use of nonhuman primates in biomedical research and testing. We urge governments, regulators, industry, scientists and research funders worldwide to accept the need to end primate use as a legitimate and essential goal; to make achieving this goal a high priority; and work together to facilitate this. In particular, we believe there must be an immediate, internationally co-ordinated effort to bring all non-human primate experiments to an end”.

EDM 270 signed by 41 MPs


In the UK, an Early Day Motion 270 was tabled for NAVS by Colin Challen, MP from Morley and Rothwell, to gather support in the House of Commons for a ban on primates at the European level. The EDM “expresses its deep concern that the United Kingdom is Europe’s largest user of laboratory monkeys; and urges the Government to support a phase-out of all non-human primate experiments in the EU over the next six years in the Council of Ministers”. It also highlights that the use of non-human primates is an unreliable predictor of likely human effects and that a wide range of safer alternatives are available.

41 MP Signatories to NAVS EDM 270

1.Challen, Colin Morley and Rothwell
2.Russell, Bob Colchester
3.Penning, Mike Hemel Hempstead
4.Chaytor, David Bury North
5.Jenkins, Brian Tamworth
6.Dismore, Andrew Hendon
7.Sanders, Adrian Torbay
8.Hancock, Mike Portsmouth South
9.Taylor, David North West Leicestershire
10.Leech, John Manchester Withington
11.Hoyle, Lindsay Chorley
12.Knight, Greg Yorkshire East
13.Lazarowicz, Mark Edinburgh North and Leith
14.Lepper, David Brighton Pavilion
15.Meale, Alan Mansfield
16.Caton, Martin Gower
17.Corbyn, Jeremy Islington North
18.Drew, David Stroud
19.McCafferty, Chris Calder Valley
20.O’Hara, Edward Knowsley South
21.Owen, Albert Ynys Môn
22.Donaldson, Jeffrey Lagan Valley
23.Baker, Norman Lewes
24.Vis, Rudi Finchley and Golders Green
25.Campbell, Gregory Londonderry East
26.Conway, Derek Old Bexley and Sidcup
27.Dodds, Nigel Belfast North
28.Etherington, Bill Sunderland North
29.Williams, Betty Conwy
30.McCrea, Dr William South Antrim
31.Farrelly, Paul Newcastle-under-Lyme
32.Singh, Marsha Bradford West
33.Heyes, David Ashton under Lyne
34.Simpson, Alan Nottingham South
35.Ennis, Jeff Barnsley East and Mexborough
36.Wood, Mike Batley and Spen
37.Dean, Janet Burton
38.McCarthy, Kerry Bristol East
39.Bailey, Adrian West Bromwich West
40.Field, Frank Birkenhead
41. Flynn, Paul Newport West

Click here for more information on the Berlin Declaration

World Day for Law Animals; 24 April 2007

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