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Tuesday, 12 November 2002
Page: 6150

Senator BARNETT (9:48 PM) —I stand to support the comments of Senator Abetz and Senator Harradine on this particular matter. I think the amendment tightens the bill. We are talking about importing human embryo clones into Australia, and the amendment identifies the importation of products or components derived from a human embryo clone. So it is really a tightening—a broadening—of the bill; it is an improvement to the bill. I think everybody has made their point clear during the debate on the second reading that we abhor human cloning. Senator Abetz has made the point well, as has Senator Harradine. I want to make one other point, though. If, for whatever reason, a person has a human clone and it must be proved that the person intentionally imported the human embryo clone or the person intentionally exported a human embryo clone, I put it to the chamber to consider this: what if that cannot be proved? What if, for some unknown reason, there was an unintentional importation of that human embryo clone? I think that is another angle that needs to be considered in this whole debate about this bill, because the offence is talking about the intentional importation of a human embryo clone. I know this will come up. Senator Abetz will foreshadow some amendments in this regard shortly. I think that is another angle that perhaps the minister could consider in her response to the points that have been made.