March 3, 2024

UN group calls for ban on cloned babies

Report from UN thinktank says that reproductive cloning is inevitable.

Human reproductive cloning should be banned globally to prevent rogue
scientists from creating cloned babies, says a United Nations report.
Although 50 UN members have laws which outlaw cloning, another 140 do
not. The report calls upon the UN to take a stand "urgently".
It also says that governments should enact laws to protect the rights
of cloned children, as cloning is inevitable. However, the report,
"Is Human Reproductive Cloning Inevitable? Future Options for UN
governance", published by law experts at the UN University’s
Institute of Advanced Studies, argues that therapeutic cloning should
be allowed.

Despite their firm opposition to reproductive cloning, the authors
acknowledge that a number of academics and ethicists do not object.
By coincidence, only this week, one of the UK’s most influential
bioethicists, John Harris, of Manchester University, told the London
that arguments against reproductive cloning which are not
based on safety do not stack up. And Alison Murdoch, the leader of a
team at Newcastle University which successfully cloned a short-lived
human embryo, actually opposes a ban. "We shouldn’t be afraid of
the idea of two individuals with genetically identical material,
although I cannot see a good clinical need for that," she says.
"The risk you run by trying to ban cloning outright is that it
may send those scientists who want do that kind of research to
countries where it is completely unregulated." ~ London
Telegraph, Nov 11