07/16/05 The Battle for the Beagles Continues
After the demonstration, which took place this Thursday in front of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, the battle for the beagles continues
After obtaining information about the beagles that were sent to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Zagreb in order to be cruelly experimented on and after presenting the evidence and the photographs to the public, in only a few days a great scandal, involving responsible persons at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and the Faculty of Medicine in Zagreb, was uncovered, and it is probably linked to the interests of a major pharmaceutical company and dirty profit!
On Saturday, July 16, 2005, at noon, Animal Friends' activists and many citizens will gather at the Ban Jelacic Square to raise their voice once again in order to stop the coming experiments that involve the breaking of the dogs' bones and to save these beagles from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Zagreb. Many citizens from other cities, as well as many other societies promised their participation at this demonstration. Also, more than twenty beagle dogs will take part in this demonstration, because their owners are enraged by the torture and killing of these good-natured and agreeable dogs.
At the informative stand set up by Animal Friends at the corner of Jurisiceva and Petrinjska ulica from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M. the citizens will be able to see the video footage of the beagle dogs, which was shot last week at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Zagreb, which undoubtedly proves the horrible conditions that the dogs are kept in, and also to get information about the whole case.
We urge the citizens to send protest letters to responsible ministries and to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and the University of Zagreb Medical School, whose contacts can be found at Animal Friends web site.
The lies and the irresponsible conduct by the officials!
At the press conference held yesterday at the Faculty for Veterinary Medicine the dean Ljiljana Pinter said how she "responsibly claims" that the beagles are kept in quarantine at the Faculty for Veterinary Medicine until July 21, after which they will be sent to the University of Zagreb Medical School. The import permit for the 32 beagle dogs from Italy was issued to Dr. Slobodan Vukicevic. The dean said in front of all media that she didn't know anything about the experiments at her faculty, that she only found out about the dogs from the media, that she didn't know who would finance the accommodation of the beagles at the faculty, that she didn't know which experiments the dogs were supposed to be exposed to, and that she would undertake the necessary measures to punish the responsible person for this mistake, dr. Antun Brkic, head of the Surgical Department at the Faculty for Veterinary Medicine.
However, in yesterday's talk show "Otvoreno" on Croatian television it was uncovered that all claims by dean Pintar were not true! Strong evidence was given that one month ago the dean sent a request to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management a request to issue the permit for animal experiments at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Since the request was approved, experiments on the beagles could start any moment! Since Kresimir Korzinek, orthopedics specialist at the University of Zagreb Medical School, said that his institution had no conditions for keeping the dogs nor that any experiments were planned, it was obvious that both faculties are trying to wash their hands from the scandal.
According to the information of the ministries in charge, the dogs were brought to the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine to undergo experiments involving the intentional fracturing of bones in order to test the morphogenetic bone protein (BMP), which helps faster healing of bones. According to the media, three years ago BMP was already tested not only on animals, but on people as well.
According to the Act 28 of Animal Welfare Law, experiments on animals may only be conducted by legal persons pursuant to the Decision authorising the conduction of experiments, which shall be issued by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management. However, according to their spokesperson, the Ministry never issued the permission for the experiments on these beagles on the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, meaning that these experiments are conducted illegally and that persons involved in such experiments are breaking the Animal Welfare Law! Even though penalties that should be imposed for breaking this act are exceptionally low, Animal Friends Croatia sent a report to the Veterinary Inspection in which they ask for the inspection of the experiments conducted on beagles on the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and maximal penalties that should be imposed for such misdemeanors.
Judging by all accessible information, these experiments have no scientific justification and they are only used as a cover-up for the dirty business linked with huge profit, for which the people involved should be held responsible for breaking the law, and the dogs should be taken away.
92% of Croatians publicly said NO to animal experiments!
Since in the yesterday's "Otvoreno" talk-show 92% of Croatian citizens openly declared themselves against animal experiments in scientific purposes, the inbox of Animal Friends has been overwhelmed by mails of support by societies and individuals from Croatia and abroad. At this moment many people have called in and said they would like to give home to the beagles, thus Animal Friends calls all citizens to keep calling in order to save the beagles from horrible death.
Because of the well-founded suspicion that experiments that should start next week are illegal, we demand:
- that the State Attorney urgently stops the experiments, to order an investigation into the irregularities and the breaking of the laws, which would lead to the confiscation of the beagles and finding new homes for them,
- that the will of the people, which is appealed by the experiments, condemns them and ask for their immediate end and finding new homes for the dogs, be respected,
- that a formal investigation about the suspicious and illegal conduct at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine be ordered, and that all responsible persons be punished according to the law and moved from their current positions,
- that a financial inspection be undertaken to find out who has been paying for the accommodation and other expenses related to the beagles, as well as other possible irregularities related to the financing of the experiments,
- that the responsible persons from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, primarily dr. Antun Brkic, and from the University of Zagreb Medical School, primarily dr. Slobodan Vukicevic, state their involvement on the whole case.
Croatia will not and must not be a dumping place for the dirty business of Europe and the world, and the citizens of Croatia clearly showed yesterday that they would not turn their backs to the ones in need. Therefore, we ask our citizens, societies and the media to persist in unveiling the truth and pressuring the responsible institutions, because only if we work together, can we save the beagles from having their bones broken and then being killed, as well as prevent future crimes towards animals.