Christian Democrats allows restricted embryo testing
The Christian Democrats party agrees to embryo testing but wants cabinet to draw careful guidelines and conditions for screening procedures.11 June 2008
THE NETHERLANDS - Senior coalition partner Christian Democrats is not rejecting embryo testing for hereditary forms of breast and bowel cancer outright, but its party spokesman Henk Jan Ormel wants the cabinet to draw up careful guidelines and conditions for screening procedures.
Ormel did not specify what these conditions are, although his statement did break the silence which his party has maintained for the past two weeks on an issue which has developed into a fierce nationwide debate.
The Christian Union, the smallest of the government partners, is against embryo testing.
Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the CU, André Rouvoet, forced Labour Deputy Health Minister Jet Bussemaker to withdraw permission to increase the number of hereditary diseases test-tube embryos can be screened for, a move which provoked outrage from doctors and patients alike, as well as splitting the coalition.
The cabinet has agreed to resolve its differences before the summer recess and to decide on a concrete proposal for embryo testing.
[Radio Netherlands / Expatica]