Media Release: Thursday, 17 August, 2006

Only four years ago, Senator Patterson claimed that the passage of the Research Involving Human Embryos Act and the Prohibition on Human Cloning Act would not open the door to further killing of human beings. Her statement has been proved wrong, according to ACL’s Managing Director, Jim Wallace.

“The Lockhart Committee itself defines therapeutic cloning as cloning,” stated Jim Wallace. “The process of creating a cloned human embryo is the same for both therapeutic and reproductive cloning, the only difference being whether the embryo is destroyed at an early stage after its stem cells have been harvested or whether it is implanted into a woman’s womb and allowed to develop to birth.”

“If the Lockhart Committee recommendations are accepted, it will be legal to create and destroy human embryos for research purposes. In her decision to sponsor a bill on therapeutic cloning, Senator Patterson herself is opening the door to further killing of human beings - a door she claimed would remain shut,” said Mr Wallace.

“If it takes only four years for Parliament to slide to an acceptance of therapeutic cloning then how long will it be before a bill for reproductive cloning is seriously considered? The current misinformation concerning definitions of therapeutic cloning must be corrected. Cloning is cloning.”

Contact: Jim Wallace