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Murder of Relief Workers: Definition

Lord McNair asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Williams of Mostyn: There is no statutory definition of what constitutes a war crime. However offences committed in the course of armed conflict, both international and otherwise, may be prosecuted under the Geneva Convention Act of 1957. And where the relief or aid worker is deemed to be a member of the United Nations, as defined by the Act, action may also be taken under the United Nations Personnel Act 1997.

Medicines (Advertising) Regulations

Lord Harris of Haringey asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Baroness Hayman): The proposed Independent Review Panel which will review preliminary decisions on advertising under Regulation 13 of the Medicines (Advertising and Monitoring of Advertising) Amendment Regulations 1999 (S.I. No. 267) will:


    (a) consider written representations from pharmaceutical companies together with the advertising and promotional material for compliance with the Medicines (Advertising) Regulations;


    (b) advise Health Ministers on the acceptability of the advertising and promotional material potential in breach of the regulations, not on the issue of a notice to cease advertising. The recipient of a notice may of course ask the courts to review the legality of the issue of a notice;

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    (c) issue its advice to the licensing authority, which will then make a final decision before notifying the company accordingly. If, exceptionally, the Health Ministers depart from the panel's advice, they will state their reasons for so doing in writing to the company;


    (d) and (e) as with other advisory bodies the secretariat will be derived from officials of the Medicines Control Agency. A decision has yet to be taken on whether the MCA will publish decisions made on advertising considered by the panel.

Human Cloning: Council of Europe Protocol

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Why they were not among the 19 European nations which signed the ban on human cloning agreed in Paris on 12 April. [HL2118]

Baroness Hayman: We are not aware of an agreement signed in Paris on 12 April regarding human cloning.

The Council of Europe Protocol on the Prohibition of Cloning Human Beings was opened for signature on 12 January 1998, and 19 European nations signed the Protocol on that day.

This protocol can only be signed by a member state which has signed the Council of Europe Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine. The United Kingdom has not yet signed the convention. When the protocol was opened for signature, the Government were consulting on the research provisions of the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine as part of the consultation on decision-making for the mentally incapacitated undertaken by the Lord Chancellor's Department.

It would not be appropriate to sign a convention while actively engaged in consultation on its provisions. However, the Government fully support the principles enshrined in the Protocol on the Prohibition of Cloning Human Beings, which are already reflected in United Kingdom law and practice.

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will publish the text of the Council of Europe protocol banning human cloning; and whether they will list the countries who are signatories to it. [HL2119]

Baroness Hayman: The text of the Council of Europe Protocol Banning Human Cloning is published by the Council of Europe and reads as follows:


    "The Member States of the Council of Europe, the other States and the European Community Signatories to this Additional Protocol to the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Dignity of the Human Being with Regard to the Application of Biology and Medicine.

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    Noting scientific developments in the field of mammal cloning, particularly through embryo splitting and nuclear transfer:


    Mindful of the progress that some cloning techniques themselves may bring to scientific knowledge and its medical application;


    Considering that the cloning of human beings may become a technical possibility;


    Having noted that embryo splitting may occur naturally and sometimes result in the birth of genetically identical twins;


    Considering however that the instrumentalisation of human beings through the deliberate creation of genetically identical human beings is contrary to human dignity and thus constitutes a misuse of biology and medicine;


    Considering also the serious difficulties of a medical, psychological and social nature that such a deliberate biomedical practice might imply for all the individuals involved;


    Considering the purpose of the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine, in particular the principle mentioned in Article 1 aiming to protect the dignity and identity of all human beings,

Have agreed as follows: Article 1

1. Any intervention seeking to create a human being genetically identical to another human being, whether living or dead, is prohibited.

2. For the purpose of this article, the term human being "genetically identical" to another human being means a human being sharing with another the same nuclear gene set. Article 2

No derogation from the provisions of this Protocol shall be made Article 26, paragraph 1, of the Convention. Article 3

As between the Parties, the provisions of Articles 1 and 2 of this Protocol shall be regarded as additional articles to the Convention and all the provisions of the Convention shall apply accordingly. Article 4

This Protocol shall be open for signature by Signatories to the Convention. It is subject to ratification, acceptance or approval. A Signatory may not ratify, accept or approve this Protocol unless it has previously or simultaneously ratified, accepted or approved the Convention. Instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe. Article 5

1. This Protocol shall enter into force on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date on which five States, including at least four member States of the Council of Europe, have expressed their consent to be bound by the Protocol in accordance with the provisions of Article 4.

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2. In respect of any Signatory which subsequently expresses its consent to be bound by it, the Protocol shall enter into force on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of the deposit of the instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval. Article 6

1. After the entry into force of this Protocol, any State which has acceded to the Convention may also accede to this Protocol.

2. Accession shall be effected by the deposit with the Secretary General of the Council of Europe of an instrument of accession which shall take effect on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of its deposit. Article 7

1. Any Party may at any time denounce this Protocol by means of a notification addressed to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.

2. Such denunciation shall become effective on the first day of the month following the expiration of a period of three months after the date of receipt of such notification by the Secretary General. Article 8

The Secretary General of the Council of Europe shall notify the member states of the Council of Europe, the European Community, any Signatory, any Party and any other State which has been invited to accede to the Convention of:


    (a) any signature;


    (b) the deposit of any instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession;


    (c) any date of entry into force of this Protocol in accordance with Articles 5 and 6;


    (d) any other act, notification or communication relating to this Protocol.


    In witness whereof the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto, have signed this Protocol.

Done at Paris, this twelfth day of January 1998, in English and in French, both texts being equally authentic, in a single copy which shall be deposited in the archives of the Council of Europe. The Secretary General of the Council of Europe shall transmit certified copies to each member State of the Council of Europe, to the non-member States which have participated in the elaboration of this Protocol, to any State invited to accede to the Convention and to the European Community."

The following countries are signatories to the Protocol:

Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Turkey.

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