EU Parliament Urged To Ban 'Cruel' Monkey Tests

More than 6,000 of the animals are used in the experiments every year across Europe
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Monkey cruelty at Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics

Cruelty Free International has investigated the use of monkeys in experiments (Photo: Cruelty Free International and Soko Tierschutz)

EU politicians are facing calls to ban the use of monkeys in neuroscience tests.

More than 6,000 monkeys are used in research and testing across Europe annually, with some used in experiments where they are restrained by their heads for hours at a time and forced to watch images on a computer screen. They are often deprived of food or water for long periods to encourage them to co-operate.

At an EU Parliament meeting in Strasbourg today - part of the monthly Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals where MEPs meet to discuss animal welfare issues - Cruelty Free International's Director of Science and Regulatory Affairs, Dr. Katy Taylor - will discuss the issue.

Ethical issues

The charity, which has reviewed how monkeys are used for brain research in 2016, said it found claims by researchers that these monkey experiments were essential to medical progress to be 'misleading'. It adds that it is 'heartbreaking' that monkeys continue to suffer in European laboratories.

According to Dr. Katy Taylor: "Our investigations have raised important ethical and scientific issues while exposing the immense suffering of monkeys in this type of research.

"It is now time for the use of primates in neuroscience research to end across Europe and we call on those bodies responsible for funding and licensing these experiments to end their support."