Dr Jane Goodall Calls On Air France to Stop Cruel Monkey Business
Globally renowned primatologist Dr Jane Goodall certainly knows a thing or two about monkeys – since the 1960s, she has been conducting groundbreaking research into the lives of chimpanzees and other primates. So she speaks with authority when she describes the suffering of the animals who are shipped by Air France to laboratories.
In an e-mail to Alexandre de Juniac, the chair and chief executive of Air France, she explains:
You may not know this, but in the wild, long-tailed monkeys—the species Air France most commonly ships to laboratories—live in warm rain forests near the water and travel up to a mile a day playing, foraging for food and socializing with one another. They live in groups of up to 30 and at night, they sleep huddled together high up in the trees. Babies are nursed by their mothers until they are more than a year old and females remain in the same social groups for life with their mothers, daughters, sisters and cousins. These social, intelligent primates can live to be more than 30 years old.
Air France is unfortunately ensuring that they don’t get to experience any of this.
The monkeys Air France transports have been traumatically captured in the jungle or are the young offspring of mothers who were taken from the wild and forced to breed at horrendous monkey farms. One recent expose of a supplier in Mauritius that Air France apparently services showed babies being roughly ripped from their mothers and crudely tattooed for identification while fully conscious.
Once Air France delivers these monkeys to laboratories on long and terrifying flights, they are deprived of everything meaningful and necessary for them to be happy. In most cases, they are confined by themselves in small, desolate cages. They are denied physical contact with other monkeys. The only time they are removed from their cages is when someone is coming to subject them to a distressful or painful procedure. As would be the case in humans, this treatment leaves them desperately lonely, traumatised and psychologically damaged. They often rock, spin, cry out and even self mutilate.
These routine, miserable conditions are the backdrop to dreadful experiments in which the monkeys are poisoned, cut into, restrained, starved, shocked and infected.
All other major airlines—including Lufthansa, Aer Lingus, China Southern Airlines, United Airlines, Alitalia, Delta Airlines, British Airways and American Airlines—have made the compassionate decision to end their involvement in this business. I hope that you will take swift and decisive action to do the same.
Please join Dr Goodall – and other celebrities, including James Cromwell and Chris Packham – in speaking out against Air France’s primate trafficking policy.
Send an e-mail to Air France officials explaining how horrified you are by the fact that the airline ships thousands of monkeys each year from Asia and the island of Mauritius to laboratories and laboratory suppliers in France, the United States, and other countries and letting them know that you will be choosing to fly with other airlines until Air France changes its policy.
Here are the e-mail addresses to contact:
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Thank you for your compassion!