PETA urges Jimmy Carter to quit fishing

ATLANTA — A prominent U.S.-based animal rights group urged former President Jimmy Carter on Monday to give up fishing on the grounds that the activity was inconsistent the Nobel peace laureate's humanitarian efforts.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals made its appeal in a letter faxed to Carter's non-profit Carter Center on Monday. The group said the letter was prompted by Carter's recent appearance on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno.

Carter, who served as president from 1977 to 1981 and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002, told Leno of the pain he suffered when he accidentally hooked himself through the face on a fishing trip.

"We're asking President Carter to think this through and to grant fish peace by leaving them in the water where they belong," PETA President Ingrid Newkirk said in a press release.

A Carter Center spokesman said the center does not comment on Carter's private correspondence.