Animal Defenders International

 

Animal Defenders International

The Primate Nations: Conclusions & Recommendations, page 1

Posted: 1 September 2006

There is no doubt primates suffer severely in research – it is the most brutal and systematic abuse that these highly developed relatives of human beings endure. That it is the domain of highly educated and wealthy western countries possibly makes it even less excusable than the person living in poverty and seemingly pressed by circumstances into hunting for bushmeat. It also makes control of the pet, entertainment, and bushmeat trades difficult if such a large industry remains sanctioned and protected from legislation that governs other sectors of society. The primate nations cannot sustain any increases in the primate laboratory trade. This, combined with the other threats to their very existence, could push these species into the abyss.

On the other hand, advanced and sophisticated modern technology can be employed to replace the use of primates in research and benefit humans too.

Recommendations

  • An end to the use of primates in laboratory research must become a legitimate goal of governments worldwide.
  • ADI therefore recommends an immediate moratorium on the import of primates for research, pending a full and open investigation of the use of primates in research and the alternative techniques available.
  • This review should involve all stakeholders in devising a strategy to replace the use of primates in research and testing at an early date.

    • Conditions should be attached to licences to use primates to the effect that applicants are obliged to contribute to an international database of primate research and testing.
    • This database should involve input from all stakeholders; non-governmental organisations, government agencies, pharmaceutical industry and others.

      • Pharmaceutical companies should be encouraged to share data on primate testing and the alternatives, perhaps by means of incentives.
      • The UK government should press for an international registration, microchipping and passport-style system of control over captive-bred primates, to ensure that animals do not continue to be taken from the wild.
      • Strict checks to be made of foreign primate suppliers and Home Office reports on visits to foreign suppliers should be published on the internet.
      • Under the European Commission’s review of EC Directive 86/609 on animal experiments, the EU has the opportunity to provide the engine for change, with the immediate prohibition of the use of Great apes in experiments and the use of wild-caught primates in the EU and phase out all non-human primate experiments in the EU over the next 6 years.

      Parliamentary Motions for International Primate Day 1st September 2006:

      European Parliament: MEPs David Martin, Vice-President of the European Parliament; Robert Evans; Paulo Casaca; Sajjad Karim and Carl Schlyter are sponsoring a Written Declaration:

      “The European Parliament – having regard to Rule 116 of its Rules of Procedure,
      A. considering Protocol No. 33 to the EC Treaty stating that, “the Community and the Member States shall pay full regard to the welfare requirements of animals” in formulating the Community’s research policy,
      B. noting the Berlin Declaration, signed by over 200 international animal protection organisations, scientists, public figures and parliamentarians calls for: “…an immediate, internationally co-ordinated effort to bring all non-human primate experiments to an end.”
      C. noting that primates have a high level of intelligence, being the closest relative to humans, with certain species such as chimpanzees sharing 98% of human DNA,
      D. noting that International Primate Day 2006 organised by Animal Defenders International is aimed at raising awareness worldwide about the hazards faced by non-human primates. The very existence of primates is being threatened by the bushmeat, laboratory, entertainment and pet trades,
      I. Urges the Commission to end non-human primate experiments in the revision process of Directive 86/609 EC on the use of animals in scientific procedures, specifically: to prohibit chimpanzee experiments and the use of wild-caught primates in the EU and phase out all non-human primate experiments in the EU over the next 6 years,
      II. Instructs its President to forward this declaration, together with the names of the signatories, to the Council, Commission and Member States.

      Next: Conclusions & recommendations, page 2

      References

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