UNITED NATIONS, NY—The United Nations will reopen talks on a human cloning ban next year rather than in 2 years, a decision marked by the back-and-forth wrangling that has become de rigeur among countries unable to reach a consensus on the issue.

Indeed, the last-minute maneuvering by a US-led coalition of nations to reverse an earlier vote by the UN's Sixth Committee, which opted for the 2-year wait, appeared to infuriate the United Kingdom.

“The United Kingdom is profoundly disappointed by the actions of those who sought until very recently to overturn the decision of the Sixth Committee. During the deliberations of the Sixth Committee, we made clear the views of the United Kingdom. The UK is totally opposed to reproductive cloning, and we were one of the first countries in the world to introduce specific legislation to ban this possibility. However, in our view, therapeutic cloning is a different...

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