Amerijet has rejected a plea from an animal rights group to stop transporting monkeys headed for research labs and vivisection experiments.
Their position makes the Fort Lauderdale-based company the only airline in the country to import research monkeys.
Last month Animal Rights Foundation of Florida wrote to Amerijet requesting that the cargo airline change its policy about transporting primates used for research and vivisection. The group also staged a peaceful protest with 30 of its supporters outside the company’s headquarters.
Now ARFF has received a letter from Amerijet stating the airline will not be canceling their “monkey flights” anytime soon and threatened the organization with legal action under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act if they continue to target the airline.
The correspondence from David G. Bassett, CEO of Amerijet International , Inc. said, “Your organization has called upon Amerijet to refuse to transport primates that may be used for research. We have carefully considered the position taken by our organization. However we stand by our decision to transport animals and will continue in the future to serve the needs of our customers for animal transport.”
Bassett also pointed out, “to refuse to provide transportation services requested of us does not respect our customers’ right to engage in lawful pursuits.”
The airline alluded that it has in the past stopped working with businesses that are under investigation by “governments or other enforcement bodies for failing to meet legal standards or international conventions.”
But when Amerijet received notification that one of their clients, Primate Products was under investigation by the USDA for injuring several monkeys, the company continued to do business with them, as usual.
Amerjet refers to themselves as law-abiding citizens who are providing a humane service for the animals they transport because flying them to their destinations is the most “expedient method of transporting animals over long distances.”
The airline does not acknowledge that they are flying these animals to research labs or that they are involved in a cruel trade.
Amerijet’s decision comes as a setback after the good news last week when the National Institutes of Health announced it had stopped the transfer of 186 chimpanzees to a biomedical laboratory in Texas.
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