NEWS

Church shies at fertilization law

Draft legislation banning human cloning for reproductive – but not medical – purposes and setting a strict framework for artificial fertilization was condemned yesterday by the Church of Greece as a potential threat to «the sacred institution of the family.» The Church’s ruling body, the Holy Synod, said the draft law «reverses our Family Law and severely distorts family morals.» The draft legislation, unveiled by the Justice Ministry on Thursday, allows artificial fertilization on grounds of sterility or should the child inevitably suffer from serious hereditary diseases. It bans gender selection, unless dictated by the threat of hereditary disorders, and only permits widows to use their husbands’ frozen sperm for insemination with the express written permission of the deceased. «Does the act of allowing human beings to be born into certain orphanage, or of ignoring the natural laws of human development constitute progress?» the Synod statement said. «[The draft law] gives unwed mothers the option of childbirth… and clears the way for permitting unnatural cohabitation.»