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Tuesday, 24th April

The BioTrinity conference is the largest gatherings of bio/pharma industry in the UK, and was attended by over 800 delegates during the 3 days, from pharmaceutical companies (including AstraZeneca, Merck, Novartis, Roche, Pfizer), investors and those involved in research and development - many of whom are involved in animal experimentation, including Oxford University.

Ironically the conference started on April 24, the designated World Day for Animals In Laboratories and so, not surprisingly, activists were on hand to welcome all with banners and placards showing the suffering animals go through inside the labs of many of the companies taking part. The Exhibitors and delegates attending the evenings Grand Opening Reception were left in no doubt as to the strength of feeling against animal research by those demonstrating at the entrance.

While others were outside carrying out a demonstration, two activists managed to make their way into the building, past a number of security checks and into the area where the stalls had been set up. Leaflets were spread around and speeches made with the activists talking about Huntingdon Life Sciences and the SHAC campaign as well as the abuse that is animal testing in general. They also spoke of the human cost of animal testing, the billions spent by the NHS each year in treating people that have suffered adverse side effects of animal-tested drugs and the numbers killed by these drugs on top of the millions of non-human animals who die unnecessarily each year.

Security guards were seen running around out-of-breath and confused as to how the activists had got in, trying desperately to round up the 2 who were calmly walking around the stalls talking to on-lookers. It took several minutes for them to be removed before they were detained outside where they carried on their demonstration in full view of staff, attendees and leisure-centre-goers next door. Racecourse management finally convinced the police to let them go and join the rest of the demonstrators on the road.

No doubt there will be another BioTrinity conference again next year, and have no doubt that activists will be there again to get the message across loud and clear – experiments on animals will not be tolerated. As long as those involved in medical research associate with vivisection, they will face the increasing opposition of those who have already realised the futility and unacceptability of torturing animals to death.

All in all a successful day! See you next year...



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