PETA Protesters Take on Army at Washington Convention Center

PETA protesters are taking on the armed forces this week at the Washington Convention Center.

Wearing monkey masks, the Virginia-based animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is taking a stand against what they call cruel procedures involving primates conducted by the U.S. Army.

"We're here to urge the military and particularly the Army to stop poisoning monkeys," said Justin Goodman, a PETA spokesperson.

According to PETA, the Army injects monkeys with a chemical overdose as part of a training lesson demonstrating the effects of a nerve agent attack.  PETA says that in most countries, other militaries use a human simulator for the demonstration.  The animal rights group said that it is only at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland where monkeys are still used for this purpose.

This week, the Association of the United States Army holds its annual meeting at the Washington Convention center.  Thousands of personnel will be in attendance, and PETA hopes to grab their attention.  The group says that several retired service members have pledged support for their campaign.

AUSA spokesperson told News4's Tracee Wilkins that the organization supports PETA's right to free speech.  The AUSA did not offer a specific response to PETA's claims.

However, regarding PETA's claims of animal cruelty, AUSA did not have any comment.

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