Newspaper Warns of Embryonic-Research Plan

Comments on Europarliament Proposal

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 18, 2006 ( To use human embryos for research purposes is to forget the lessons of the tragedies of the 20th century, says L’Osservatore Romano.

In an article Saturday in its Italian edition, the Vatican’s semiofficial newspaper commented on the framework program for research by the European Parliament, which includes a budget that would fund work with human embryonic stem cells.

The framework program passed a first reading of the Parliament on Thursday.

According to L’Osservatore Romano, the program is a “fundamental error” of the European Parliament, based on a “tragically utilitarian concept” of the human being.

“And yet Europe, daughter of the 20th century, and born in opposition to the aberrations of that century, should be sensitive given the effects of a concept of this kind, if carried to its extreme conclusions,” the article said.

“Intolerant when it comes to admitting the Christian roots of its identity, it seems that Europe today wishes to recognize itself in a blind secularism, which not only denies the religious convictions of the majority of its population, but also the inviolable rights of the person,” the paper added.

In this way, Europe “offends the dignity of man and rejects the principles inscribed in human nature itself and, therefore, common to the whole of humanity.”

Before becoming definitive, the framework program must first pass through the European Council before returning to the Parliament for a second reading.

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