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Legislative Updates: Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia

Genetic Crossroads
October 3rd, 2001

An Australian parliamentary committee has recommended a total ban on human cloning and on the creation of embryos for research. In addition it called for national regulation of research on adult and existing embryonic stem cell lines. But it was unable to reach agreement on the issue of using surplus human embryos for research. The committee's 300-page report is likely to form the basis of future state and federal policies. See <www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_403299.html>.

The Council of Europe's Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine, which prohibits the cloning of human beings and human embryos, took effect in the Czech Republic on October 1. See <http://newsreal. yellowbrix.com/pages/newsreal/Story.nsp?story_id=23953848&ID=newsreal&scategory=Internet&>.

In Canada, comprehensive national legislation that would ban human cloning and inheritable genetic modification and regulate new genetic and reproductive technologies has been introduced. Because a vote on the bill is not expected until late next spring, a number of MPs from different parties are calling for immediate legislative action to prohibit human cloning. Liberal MPs, however, argue that the issue should be deferred until the complete bill can be considered. See <www.canoe.ca/CNEWSPolitics0109/25_clone-cp.html>.


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