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The heads of Lithuania's Christian churches have thrown their weight behind a strict law on in-vitro fertilization (IVF) that was recently passed by the parliament (Seimas) but vetoed by President Dalia Grybauskaitė.

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Gintaras Grušas
© DELFI / Domantas Pipas

"The Seimas-adopted Law on Assisted Reproduction restricts the manipulation of human embryos and, therefore, is an appropriate attempt by politicians to protect human life as much as possible," the Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Evangelical Lutheran leaders said in a statement on Thursday.

Archbishop Gintaras Grušas, the president of the Lithuanian Bishops' Conference, Archbishop Innokenty, the head of the Orthodox Church in Lithuania, and Bishop Mindaugas Sabutis, the leader of Lithuania's Evangelical Lutheran Church, criticized Grybauskaitė's proposals to not limit the number of embryos in IVF treatment and allow testing embryos for genetic disorders prior to implantation as being "incompatible with the principle of respect for human life".

The leaders also expressed their disapproval of the president's proposal to allow sperm and egg donation, saying that this "undermines the integrity of marriage and violates children's rights to know their biological parents."

BNS
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