Leuven University accused of commissioning "horrendous animal tests"

The university stands accused of by-passing the law by carrying out what according to Animal Rights were "horrendous" tests on baboons.  The university claims it had no other choice.

"The university used a loophole to have tests on baboons performed in Kenia" says independent lawmaker Hermes Sanctorum. the MP was responding to a new complaint by the organisation Animal Rights.  The lawmaker is seeking stricter checks on tests carried out outside the EU.  Leuven University denies it's by-passing the law and says it had no alternative.

Animal Rights is marking World Lab Animal Day by highlighting the tests carried out at a scientific institute in Nairobi. It claims the animals were maltreated and provides video evidence of this.  Lawmaker Sanctorum says that performing tests on animals caught in the wild is banned in the EU.  Carrying out the tests abroad throws up ethical questions. He proposes that tests carried out with Flemish cash should meet EU rules wherever they are made.

Leuven University confirms it had the tests carried out several years ago but denies it tried to sidestep EU legislation. Prof Jef Arnout of biomedical sciences says: "We were researching endometriosis, a painful disease in women.  The research can only be carried out on baboons. When the research was carried out in 2013 the only available animals were those caught in the wild."

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