SP supports phasing out of tests on animals

4 May 2009

SP supports phasing out of tests on animals

On Tuesday 5th May the European Parliament will vote on the report from British Tory Neil Parish on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes. Parish's proposal aims to reduce the use and the suffering of laboratory animals, for example through the development of alternative test methods. The SP views the proposal as a step in the right direction, although it does not go far enough.

Kartika Liotard“A number of amendments have been put forward which could weaken the proposal,” says SP Euro-MP Kartika Liotard. “We shouldn't lose sight of the goal in this matter, which is the protection of laboratory animals and not the protection of corporate profits! Procedures should be banned which are categorised as serious and by which the the pain, suffering or discomfort of the lab animals is long-lasting. Such procedures are unethical and barbaric.”

One positive characteristic of the European Commission's proposal, to which the Parish report in its final version will be the Parliament's response, is that the Commission aims to establish a system of ethical evaluation of all scientific projects which make use of animals in experiments and that permits will be issued on this basis. In addition, the use as laboratory animals of primates caught in the wild would be phased out. “The use of animals in experiments where alternatives exist should be banned,” says Liotard. “Where they are used for medical science and no alternative is as yet available, money should be invested in developing such. In medical science we should be striving to eliminate the use of laboratory animals, and that will cost money. The misuse of primates for animal experiments should be phased out in the short term because this is a scandalous practice.”

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