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Defending life from the moment of conception

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Britain will regret human cloning approval, says SPUC

11 August 2004

Britain will regret human cloning approval, says SPUC London, 11 August 2004 - The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has warned that Britain will regret allowing destructive experimentation on embryonic human beings created through cloning. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority today issued its first licence for so-called therapeutic cloning to scientists in Newcastle upon Tyne. Anthony Ozimic, SPUC political secretary, commented: "As the dangers of so-called reproductive cloning loom ever larger, Britain will regret giving approval to the unethical, dangerous and unnecessary practice of so-called therapeutic cloning. "Human cloning is unethical because it exploits and destroys the lives of countless human beings at their most vulnerable stage of development. Extracting stem cells from embryonic humans kills them. Every human being starts life as an embryo, and retains that genetic identity throughout life. International standards in medical research require that research on a human without his or her consent should only be done if the research is of benefit to that human, yet as Dr Harry Griffin, one of the creators of Dolly the sheep, has admitted: 'Therapeutic cloning is clearly not therapeutic for the embryo.'. "Human cloning is dangerous because it will lead to so-called reproductive cloning. Professor Severino Antinori, one of the scientists who wants to bring a cloned human being to birth, thanked Tony Blair for the government's legalisation of so-called therapeutic cloning, because it has made the birth of a cloned baby one step closer. Like other areas of embryo experimentation, human cloning is likely to produce none of the promised medical benefits, but it will lead to the birth of cloned babies - possibly on a vast scale. "Human cloning is unnecessary because adult stem cell research, a rapidly advancing ethical alternative to embryo experimentation, is already providing treatments for the very same diseases that pro-cloning scientists claim to be interested in treating. Even in the unlikely event that experiments on embryos did prove to have some beneficial effect, it would still be unacceptable to use human beings in this way."

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