Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Iran shouldn't put monkeys in space-race

Iran is repeating the wasteful and cruel mistakes that marked the darkest days of the space-race (Online, January 28).

Peta US urged Dr Hamid Fazeli, head of the Iranian space agency, to ground the misguided mission back in 2011, pointing out that primates are no longer sent into space by the American, or European space agencies.

Nasa ended the use of primates in space radiation experiments in the early-1990s, when it determined that the results were not relevant to human astronauts.

Monkeys are highly intelligent and sensitive animals, who not only are traumatised by the violence and noise of a launch and landing, but also suffer when caged in a laboratory before and - if they survive - after a flight.

BEN WILLIAMSON

Press officer, Peta

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