Pope John Paul on Sunday condemned human cloning as an arrogant attempt to improve on God's creation.
"The sense of power that every technical progress inspires in man is well known," the pope said in a message sent from his summer residence in Castelgandolfo to a meeting of prominent Catholic cultural, political and business leaders in the Italian city of Rimini.
"The attempt by man to appropriate the source of life by experimenting with human cloning is example enough," he said in a message sent at the start of the week-long event.
The comments come less than two weeks after British scientists were given permission to clone human embryos for medical research -- believed to be the first such license granted in Europe, informs Reuters.
"The way taught by Christ is another: it is that of respect for human beings," he said, urging ethically responsible science.
The Vatican has repeatedly condemned all attempts at human cloning, comparing it to the experiments carried out by Nazis in World War Two, reports Telegraph. News.
The pope has issued condemnations of cloning in the past. At his visit a week ago to the French shrine of Lourdes, he urged that life be "respected from conception to its natural end."
Fresh debate over cloning was sparked Aug. 11 when Britain granted its first license for human cloning for stem cell research. The license went to researchers who hope eventually to create insulin-producing cells that could be transplanted into diabetics.
Many scientists believe stem cells hold vast promise for treating an array of diseases. Stem cells can potentially grow into any type of human tissue and scientists hope to be able to direct the blank cells to grow into specific cell types needed for transplant, wrote Associated Press.
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