03/27/08 Zagreb Host to the European Coalition to End Animal Experiments

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Animal Friends invites to a demo against experiments on primates and announces an international conference

- From March 27-29, 2008, Animal Friends will host the ECEAE representatives

European Coalition to End Animal Experiments (ECEAE), which numbers 18 member organizations from 17 countries – Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, the UK, Germany, Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Belgium, Ireland, Italy, France, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Austria, and Croatia – will be in session at its regular conference.

ECEAE has campaigned for an end to animal experiments by lobbying for changes in legislation that would regulate the treatment of laboratory animals, for the 7th amendment to the cosmetics directive and recently for the European Commission's REACH proposal establishing a regulatory framework for the evaluation and authorisation of chemicals. ECEAE have also lobbied hard for increased funding for the development and validation of alternative non-animal testing methods, both through the JRC (Joint Research Centre) and ECVAM (European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods) budgets and through the Multiannual Framework Programmes for Research and Development.

On Friday, March 28 at 11 A.M., organized by Animal Friends, the ECEAE representatives will hold an intriguing performance against experiments on primates on Ban Jelacic Square. The goal of this performance is to urge the ban on experiments on primates in the European Union and Croatia.

A crucified primate wants to draw attention to the suffering of our kin mammals in the morally indefensible and scientifically questionable practice of subjecting primates to painful and invasive experiments. Primates are highly intelligent, social animals with complex behavioral and psychological needs and the research industries causes them to experience immense suffering. More than 10,000 monkeys are used in European laboratories every year.

Last year Animal Friends sent a request to the authorized ministry to legally ban experiments on primates. According to an independent survey, more than 73 per cent of Croatian citizens want to ban animal experiments since they consider such experimenting unethical.

At the ECEAE meeting in Zagreb numerous issues about animal experiments and their ending will be covered. The announced ban on selling of cosmetics in the EU, which are tested on animals, will also be discussed. According to the Croatian Animal Protection Act, testing of cosmetics and household products and their ingredients is prohibited in Croatia.

Dr. Irmela Ruhdel, a scientific advisor for alternative methods to animal experiments at the Animal Welfare Academy, Geoffrey Deckers, ECEAE chair and president of the Dutch animal protection organisation EDEV, and Dave Powell and Paul Marsden from the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection will be available for interviews.

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