EU Court Embryo Decision

Dear ProLife Colleague,

In our Oct 6 letter, we mentioned the persistent pressure on the United Nations level to establish elective abortion as a “fundamental human right,” (making us prolife physicians deniers of basic human rights). This has been in the works a long time. Here is some history: At a 1999 conference on Population and Development, thirty two young people were brought into the negotiations and given the floor. They stated that they represented all three billion of the world’s youth, and demanded the following: abortion as a human right, sexual rights for children, and a deletion of parents’ rights. (At a conference convened to discuss the needs of the world’s people, basic needs including access to clean water, sanitation, education, nutrition, health care, and employment were not addressed.) But there were some college age people present with the courage to stand against this agenda,, and FOR an agenda addressing needs such as water, sanitation, education, etc. And from their protest, the World Youth Alliance was born. (Check it out at These young adults were gladly received, and they were asked to maintain a permanent presence at the UN (astounding!).

One pivotal question they raised was: Do fundamental human rights stem from the intrinsic value of human beings? Or are human rights something granted by a human government? (in which case they can also be taken away by a human government, say, in a Roe vs Wade type decision, or by raw power, such as the Chinese One Child Policy).

And what about a human embryo, does he or she have intrinsic worth and intrinsic rights? AAPLOG says ‘YES!” And granted, not by the state, but by a Higher Power than us (or the State). This is why we do not do abortions. Nor do destructive embryo experimentation. And WYA has remained engaged in this fight for human dignity.

Now hear this!!!!

European Court of Justice ruling reaffirms the prohibition on the commercialization of human embryos starting at fertilization

In a groundbreaking ruling made public yesterday (C-34/10, “Oliver Brüstle vs. Greenpeace”), the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Justice (“the Court”) held that the definition of a human embryo includes a fertilized egg, providing a clear and unprecedented legal framework in the area of research and bioethics that is binding on all 27 European Union (EU) Member States. In so doing, the Court strengthened the prohibition on the patenting of embryonic stem cell research.

In deciding the primary issue of the definition of human embryo, the Court found that “any human ovum after fertilisation, (…) constitute a ‘human embryo’ within the meaning of Article 6(2)(c) of the Directive [98/44/EC on Legal protection of biotechnological inventions].”

AAPLOG note: they recognize the embryo has human rights!!! In this case, the right not to be commercialized. Of course, they do not recognize the embryo has a right to life. Induced abortion is epidemic in many places in Europe. We realize this may seem a bit schizoid. But it is a positive development, and THAT we applaud. And we applaud WYA!!

For more (fascinating) details, go to: