German cloning clash

Government under fire from doctors and politicians for not backing universal ban

Ned Stafford(

Germany's major opposition political party and medical groups are accusing the Foreign Ministry of ignoring the will of Parliament for failing to publicly push for a UN global treaty to ban both human reproductive cloning and therapeutic cloning for research for medical research.

Germany's lower house of parliament, or Bundestag, in February overwhelmingly approved a motion calling for an international ban on all forms of human cloning. But the Foreign Ministry has not yet signed a statement being circulated by a group of about 40 nations, led by Costa Rica and the United States, calling for a total global cloning ban. The United Nations has been deliberating over an anticloning convention for some time, with talks currently deadlocked.

Hans-Josef Fell, a member of the Bundestag who is also a research and technology spokesman for the Green Party, told The Scientist that Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer supports the idea of...

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