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On Wednesday a federal judge cleared the way for the chimps to go. But in her decision, she harshly criticized the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, which has approved the move, saying the agency’s interpretation of the Endangered Species Act “appears to thwart the dynamic of environmental protection that Congress plainly intended.”

In 2015 the Fish and Wildlife Service classified all chimpanzees, captive and wild, as endangered. The decision meant that experiments, exports and other actions were prohibited under the act unless they could be shown to benefit the species as a whole. The wildlife service’s announcement was part of a sea change in the treatment of laboratory chimps that started when theNational Institutes of Health said in 2013 that it would retire most of its chimps. All are now being retired.

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson of the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the New England Anti-Vivisection Society and others who sued the Fish and Wildlife Service lacked the legal standing to do so, because they were not suffering harm.

… Read More

Image: By Rennett Stowe from USA – Chimpanzee, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=26302299

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