More than 8,000 people sign open letter urging an end to warfare experiments on animals

Posted on the 1st September 2020

Today is International Primate Day and Animal Aid are highlighting a letter, signed by 8,008 people, which calls for a ban on the use of animals, including primates, in warfare experiments.

The original letter, signed by Animal Aid, other groups, primate sanctuaries and notable individuals was sent to Baroness Williams of Trafford, the Minister with portfolio for animal experiments. Animal Aid is now responding to the Minister’s reply and is forwarding the names of 8,008 additional people, who have added their name to the original letter.
Animal Aid is calling on Baroness Williams to ban all warfare experiments on animals, many of which are conducted at Dstl, Porton Down – a secretive government laboratory. Porton Down has a breeding colony of marmosets – small, intelligent and inquisitive monkeys – to be used in experiments.
Internal documents, obtained by Animal Aid, describe how these animals are killed when they are no longer able to breed:
  • In September 2018, internal Dstl documents reported how ‘1 female breeder was unsuccessful at carrying pregnancies to full term and was euthanised’
  • In August 2017, one male was killed ‘due to coming to the end of his breeding life, his female will be paired with one of the breeding males whose female had to be euthanised’.
One experiment, conducted at Dstl, resulted in marmosets bleeding from their genitals.
Says Jessamy Korotoga, Campaign Manager, Animal Aid
‘Animal Aid and thousands of members of the public are urging the Minister with responsibility for animal experiments to immediately ban warfare experiments. We know that at Dstl, last year, 58 procedures were conducted on marmosets alone – 38 of which were in the two highest categories of severity. It is morally wrong to subject animals to toxins, compounds and viruses that are known to cause severe suffering, and possibly death, in humans.’

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badger photo licenced under CC 2.0/Flickr user cloudtail