For the political, the theological and church discussion about reproductive medicine and genetics in Germany it might be helpful to take a Iook on the situation in other European countries. The above article informs about the discussion in Austria, which has a law of reproductive medicine since 1992. The focus of analysis lies on the legal and moral status of the embryo. It is questionable to argue that an embryo is a person. Concerning the protection of the embryo there are general philosophical reasons but also reasons of theological anthropology which lead to a position of tutiorism. In general a strict protection of the embryo must be granted, but under certain circumstances there are valid reasons for a balance of ethical goods. Detailed questions which are discussed are new indications for in-vitro-fertilization and the ethical issues of preimplantation diagnosis, of research on embryonie stem cells and of therapeutic cloning.
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