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Suicide bill report inconclusive, unsatisfactory, requires close analysis, says SPUC

7 April 2005

SPUC, a member of the Campaign Against Euthanasia has described the publication of a parliamentary report on euthanasia as "inconclusive".

Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's political secretary, commented: "The report on the Joffe Bill is inconclusive in that it neither endorses nor rejects the legalisation of assisted suicide and active voluntary euthanasia, nor recommends whether or not Lord Joffe's deceptively-named Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill should proceed."

He added: "The 1994 House of Lords select committee on medical ethics recommended that assisted suicide and active euthanasia should not be legalised because they are contrary to one of the cornerstones of our civilisation, namely, the prohibition on the intentional killing of the innocent." [SPUC press release, 4 April]

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A study investigating a vaccine against cervical cancer has raised hopes that it could be available within two years. The study involved 500 women aged between 16 and 23 from Brazil, America and Europe. The vaccine acts against the sexually transmitted virus Human Papilloma Virus and also protects against genital warts. Approximately 900 women die of cervical cancer in England every year. [The Telegraph, 7 April]

The moratorium on the use of IVF embryos for research purposes in Australia has ended. Some experts have welcomed the ending of the moratorium, saying that it will allow a continuing source of embryonic stem cells and supplies of embryos for studies into infertility and metabolism. The couple whose 'spare' IVF embryos produced Australia's first embryonic stem cell line expressed hope that other couples would donate their embryonic children to research. Mrs Schumacher, 35, said: "Why not learn something from them before they are flushed down the toilet?" [The Australian, 6 April]

800 people have gathered at a Catholic church in Florida for a Requiem Mass for Terri Schiavo, Lifenews.com reports. Fr Frank Pavone of Priests for Life urged those present to work to protect people like Terri who are at risk of euthanasia. He added: "As we commend both Terri and the Pope to the Lord, [we] are reminded of the equal value of every life, no matter how prominent or obscure, healthy or sick." [Lifenews.com, 5 April]

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