29th June 2015
Exposed: Over 4000 animals used in cruel UK military experiments
Cruelty Free International is calling for an end to the cruel use of animals in military experiments following the release of official figures.
During 2014, 4,124 animals were used in tests at the UK Government owned Porton Down laboratory in Salisbury, Wiltshire.
The figures, announced last week by the Ministry of Defence, reveal that researchers used 3,411 mice, 223 rats, 323 guinea pigs, 100 pigs and 67 non-human primates in the last year alone. That equals more than 11 animals being tested on and dying in military experiments every day.
The experiments are conducted for research into serious, deadly diseases, many of which have the potential to be used as biological weapons. Other experiments are used to investigate treatments related to the battlefield.
Marmosets were infected with fever, macaques infected with TB, mice given Ebola and pneumonic plague, and rabbits forced to endure infected wounds. Many of these experiments involved substantial suffering and resulted in the death of the animals.
Experiments carried out at Porton Down and previously exposed by Cruelty Free International have included pigs being blown up or exposed to lethal chemical warfare agents, marmosets infected with anthrax and guinea pigs poisoned with toxic nerve agents.
Katy Taylor, Cruelty Free International Director of Science, said: “We believe the public will be as horrified as we are to learn the full extent of the suffering inflicted upon thousands of animals every year in these disturbing tests. Although Cruelty Free International supports the need to ensure the safety of soldiers and civilians, we do not believe that subjecting animals to such grotesque experiments is the way to achieve this.”