Re: [HLSsucks] Animal-rights militants halt lab with violent tactics
- Destroying things of course to be heard and for a good cause.ColleenIn a message dated 8/9/2004 7:39:11 PM Eastern Daylight Time, bibininita@... writes:ONE QUESTION:What is more violent: destroying things (and I am not saying is OK).. or killing LIVES?
wildtimber2112@... wrote:Posted on Sun, Aug. 08, 2004
OXFORD, England - Construction had barely begun in February on a research laboratory at Oxford University -- one scheduled to experiment with animals -- when the string of violent incidents began.
In the months that followed, the offices and trucks of a major concrete supplier to the site were vandalized a dozen times. Animal-welfare guerrillas with axes and bolt cutters sliced through brake lines and contaminated fuel tanks. A factory and several trucks were set on fire.
An anonymous posting on an animal-welfare Web site called Arkangel, which described the raids, attributed the violence to a radical group called the Animal Liberation Front, which was formed in the 1970s.
In June, shareholders in the Montpellier Group, a publicly held company in London that was building the lab, received a forged letter, supposedly from the company's chairman, threatening them and telling them to sell their shares. Montpellier's stock price plummeted. The company soon pulled out of the project.
The construction site, in Oxford's science quadrangle, is now silent, although the university said it would find another builder and that the work would continue on schedule.
Montpellier's withdrawal was the second major victory in Britain this year for emboldened animal-welfare groups, which have proved to be more militant, and better-organized and -financed, than ever. In January, after months of pressure, intimidation and protests from the groups, Cambridge University abandoned plans to build a major primate research center.
``It has been an incredible year for us,'' said Greg Avery of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty, a group that wages a continuing campaign against Britain's largest research lab, owned by Huntingdon Life Sciences, near Cambridge. ``The animal-rights movement is bigger and stronger than it has ever been.'' Avery said his group was not responsible for any violence.
The militants' successes have alarmed investors, scientists and drug manufacturers, who warn that Britain -- a dominant force in the pharmaceutical industry -- could face a serious drop in biomedical investment if the campaigns are not curtailed. They have urged the British government to crack down on the people responsible.
``There has been a slow but steady escalation in their activity,'' said Mark Matfield, executive director of the Research Defense Society, which represents researchers who use animals in testing. ``There have been changes in the law, bits of change, but the problem is getting worse instead of better.''
The United States has faced similar threats from animal-welfare advocates -- the FBI has called such advocates who hold militant views a serious domestic-terrorist threat -- but has tougher laws to deal with their tactics. The animal-welfare movement in Britain and elsewhere is mainly peaceful.Lets close down Huntingdon Life Sciences once and for all
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