UNITED NATIONS, November 20, 2001 ( – The United Nations Legal Committee supported a measure calling for a global treaty to ban human reproductive cloning. The committee decided to create an ad hoc committee to study the proposal, with a draft proposal presented by France and Germany, the initial sponsors of the measure.

In their comments during the session, France and Germany insisted that the measure would only ban reproductive cloning and not ban human cloning for experimental uses. While many of the international delegates expressed a desire to co-sponsor the measure only the Vatican spoke up in favour of banning all human cloning, including cloning for research purposes.

The Vatican’s representative Archbishop Renato Martino, said the issues of therapeutic cloning, the production of human embryos as suppliers of specialized stem cells, and embryos to be used in the treatment of certain illnesses and then destroyed, must be addressed as well. “The exploitation of human beings, sought by certain scientific and industrial circles, and pushed forward by underlying economic interests, retains all its ethical repugnance as an even more serious offence against human dignity and the right to life, since it involves human beings—embryos—who are created in order to be destroyed,” he said.

In draft resolutions approved without a vote, the Sixth Committee (Legal) recommended the establishment of two new ad hoc committees—the first to study a ban on reproductive cloning of humans

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