Yesterday (Thursday) in the House of Commons, Michael Fabricant called
for tougher action against animal rights terrorists following recent
action taken against one of his constituents.
He asked The Leader of the House, Peter Hain:- "May we have a debate on
the question of – as I call them – animal rights terrorists? The
Leader of the House will be aware that, recently, investment in a
Cambridge Laboratory was halted because of threats from so-called animal
rights activists, but he may not be aware that other investment
companies – biotechnological companies from Japan – have chosen to
invest in continental Europe instead of in the United Kingdom because of
the threat from animal rights terrorists.
"One of my constituents runs a guinea pig farm for medical research
which is controlled by the Home Office to protect the animals and to
ensure the guinea pigs are bred and kept humanely. He has written to me
saying: ‘Before New Years Eve the activists smashed all the downstairs
windows of my 86 year old father’s home whilst he was in the house, and
then threw red paint bombs through the smashed windows . . . he was
petrified . . . between Christmas and New Year they were also at my
niece’s house . . . and they turned off all her water and then concreted
the stop cock so she could not get it back on.’
"The whole House will agree that those animal rights terrorists must be
controlled, so may we have a debate on the issue? Perhaps the Home
Secretary could designate those people as terrorists, so that
organisations for which I have the greatest respect, such as the
Security Service, can be utilised to try to restrain their activities."
The Rt Hon Peter Hain answered: "The honourable Gentleman raises a very
important point. It is certainly extremely serious that the construction
and opening of that laboratory was prevented due to the threat of what,
as he rightly says, cannot be described other than as terrorism. Many of
us have a lot of sympathy with animal rights movements and support them.
We want proper protection for animals and an end to cruelty, but to take
things to such an extent and to terrorise scientists, doctors and others
involved is wholly unacceptable. The hon. Gentleman is right and I know
that the House will share his sympathies."
Michael Fabricant now says: "The irony is that if this particular
guinea pig farm is closed, laboratories will import these guinea pigs
from France where there are no inspections whatsoever to ensure that
they are protected against cruelty. I oppose the testing on animals for
cosmetics and other non-medical experiments. I also oppose the testing
on animals for medical research when that could be avoided by using
other techniques. But sadly some medical research must be conducted on
animals. I just wonder about the hypocrisy of those animal rights
terrorists who persecute my constituents yet have been vaccinated
against polio and other diseases when this is a product of animal
research. The Government must now stop talking about taking action and
start doing it. They could begin with providing extra finding for the
Staffordshire Police whose duty it is to protect my constituents".