Activists pursue basic legal rights for great apes
LONDON — In Europe, great apes are inching toward obtaining the same
legal rights as humans.
A Spanish parliamentary committee adopted resolutions last month that
would give great apes, such as chimpanzees and gorillas, the right to
life, freedom from arbitrary captivity and protection from torture.
If finally approved, as expected next year, Spain would be the first
nation to extend human rights to mankind's closest genetic relatives.
A court case from Austria could go further, if it declares a chimp a
person so the animal could have a legal guardian and funds for upkeep.
The European Court of Human Rights is considering an appeal in the
case of Matthew Hiasl Pan, a 28-year-old chimp from Austria.
http://www.usatoday .com/news/ offbeat/2008- 07-15-chimp_ N.htm_