Internationally renowned musician and singer-songwriter Moby has joined the Cruelty Free International Save Our Monkeys campaign to end the cruel exploitation of the monkeys of Mauritius.

On learning of the paradise holiday island’s role in breeding and exporting monkeys to laboratories around the world, Moby stated:“Mauritius is famous for its beautiful landscapes and its blend of cultures, so I was shocked to discover the truth about this idyllic island’s horrific trade and export of monkeys for experiments. Please support Save Our Monkeys and call upon Mauritius to end this cruel trade. Monkeys deserve the right to a free and happy life too.”

Mauritius is a popular holiday destination, yet few tourists who visit the island are aware of the suffering that is inflicted upon the country’s own monkey population. Hidden away from the sun, sea and sand of the holiday brochures lies a controversial industry that breeds and exports monkeys to laboratories around the world. Tens of thousands of monkeys are held in farms across the country, many of whom were captured from the wild and imprisoned in these farms for breeding. Denied their freedom in the lush foliage of their jungle homes, these monkeys spend their lives behind bars on concrete. Their offspring are exported overseas in small wooden crates as cargo on airlines, often on the same planes in which tourists travel.

The country is one of the world’s largest suppliers of monkeys for experiments. During 2014, 8,991 monkeys were exported to laboratories primarily in Europe and the USA. Yet, this trade is economically insignificant compared with tourism. Less than 2% of Mauritian export income involves monkeys, a small fraction of the tourism industry.

The mission of the Mauritius Ministry of Tourism is ‘to make of Mauritius the best island destination in the world’ and the department is working hard to boost the country’s image as a green or ethical holiday destination. To coincide with this, Cruelty Free International has released a series of eye-catching visuals.

The organisation has also launched a petition addressed to the Mauritius Minister of Tourism.

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