Bioethics – Transhumanism

Cambodia. Trafficking in human beings with Surrogacy. Criminal business with Surrogacy.

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▶ Justice in this country fights against the proliferation of children trafficking since the Surrogacy-based reproductive industry has elected it as a host country.

▶ According to a Police Report, 32 women were hired by the leaders of this ring, who promised a sum of $10,000 / baby, to carry and to sell their baby, through a mechanism of surrogacy.

They were given $500 cash up front and then $300 per month while carrying their babies, the report said.

After delivery, they were to get the remaining $6,000 from the ring’s leader, who was operating the scheme under the business name “Fertility Solutions PGD”.

In a similar case in August last year, the court sentenced Australian nurse Tammy Davis-Charles and two Cambodians to 18 months in jail each for their role in a surrogacy business that began in Thailand and moved to Cambodia after a Thai crackdown.

▶ Surrogacy is a criminal business that is a trafficking of women and children, which violates all fundamental rights.

▶ In Cambodia, the leaders of this criminal network face sentences of up to 20 years in jail.

Learn more : khmertimes /Cambodian authorities convict a criminal surrogacy ring.

Health. Consultation on the merits of the “Draft Additional Protocol to the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine on the Protection of the Human Rights and Dignity of Persons with Mental Disorders in respect of the involuntary placement and treatment “.

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In 2013, the Council of Europe’s Bioethics Committee started to develop a new Additional Protocol to the Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine (EIS No. 164, adopted in 1997, better known as the “Convention of Oviedo “).

This Additional Protocol is a legal instrument  to protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of persons with a serious mental disorder and who are in a situation of involuntary placement or treatment.

The general observation shows that Article 7 of the Oviedo Convention is not sufficiently clear.

This Article 7 stipulates that : “A person suffering from a serious mental disorder may be subjected, without his consent, to an intervention for the purpose of treating the disorder only when the absence of such treatment is likely to occur. seriously prejudicial to his health and subject to the conditions of protection provided for by law including monitoring and control procedures and remedies “.

This article leaves an important legal vacuum when, for a certain time, a person is not able to give his consent. This article provides for only one exception to the consent requirement. This exception is taken into account “only when the absence of such treatment may be seriously detrimental to his health”. In this situation, according to this article, the person must be “subject to the conditions of protection prescribed by law.

Everyday practice shows that involuntary placement or treatment raises a series of questions for the person concerned, as well as for staff working with them and their family or other caregivers.

As a Member of the Conference of INGOs, the European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights was asked to give its statement concerning a Draft Additional Protocol.

In relation with other Associations and NGOs committed in the Protection and Defence of persons with mental disorderthe European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights has proposed the following amendments in October 2018.


We considered that the proposed protection of persons with mental disorder as stated in the Draft Additional Protocol was not sufficient.

We have developed the following amendment proposals to the Bioethics Committee of the Council of Europe : 

The creation of an independent Public Authority in charge of places of deprivation and fundamental freedoms seems to us essential in every State. In France, it is the General Controller of places of deprivation and liberty. Its mission is to ensure the fundamental rights and dignity of persons deprived of their liberty (prisons, psychiatric institutions).

➡ We have underlined that it was necessary that the “person of trust” designated by a person with mental disorder should have no conflict of interests with the concerned person. We have also mentionned that when the person’s condition requires involuntary placement, it often means that she is unable to choose and discern a trusted person. Nevertheless we advocate that the right to choose a person of trust should be given to any person with mental health disorder.

Alternative measures to involuntary placement and treatment should be more promoted than they are mentioned in the Draft Additional Protocol. Indeed involuntary placement and treatment should remain an exception as they are always an additional trauma for the person concerned. We should always bear in mind that persons with mental disorder are vulnerable people.

➡ We also support that seclusion and restraintshould never be considered as a therapeutic treatment but as a medical decision. Alternatives measures should also be promoted as far as possible. Psychiatric interveners (physicians, health care providers, nurses…) should receive a good training concerning the management of violence to avoid the use of seclusion and restrain.

On the basis of our reflection above, we have proposed two following amendments :

Article 2 – Definitions  “Trusted person” means a person who has been chosen and expressly designated as such by a person with a mental disorder (…) “: add : ” and who does not have a conflict of interest with the patient “. 

Article 23 – Add a 3rd paragraph as follows:  “3. The law designates an independent public control authority, in charge of places of deprivation and freedoms. This public authority is in particular responsible for controlling the care provided to patients and is authorized to provide the necessary recommendations to the appropriate authority, and to the institutions concerned, to guarantee the dignity of patients. A representative of this public authority may speak at any time in private with patients who have undergone an involuntary measure”.

Bioethics. Surrogacy. Detailed Survey of surrogate mothers in INDIA by Sheela SARAVANAN.

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➡ Sheela Saravanan is an Indian researcher with a Doctorate in Public Health and has worked in several German universities. It belongs in particular to the Institute of Ethics and History of Medicine at the University of Göttingen.

As a feminist, she is interested in violence against women in India and in the South, as well as in reproductive technologies, particularly the “procreation with medical assistance”, leading to surrogate mothers in INDIA.

She has conducted a lengthy survey of surrogate mothers in India, and has published as a result of her research “A Transnational Feminist View of Surrogacy Biomarkets in India” (Springer, 2018), a document made from many interviews.

It reveals the terrible conditions under which surrogates are closely monitored throughout their pregnancy. The surrogate mothers in INDIA are very poor, are held in quasi-captivity, without any psychological support.

Learn more : Interview of Sheela Saravanan in The French Newspaper Le Figaro, 22 June 2018.


Poor Indian Woman, surrogate mother, selling its baby for money. No to surrogacy.

Bioethics. Artificial intelligence. Autonomous killing robots, animated by artificial intelligence, continue to develop in the world.

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Artificial intelligence and bioethics.

➡ Autonomous killing robots, animated by artificial intelligences, despite a warning from the UN, continue to develop in the world.

➡ The United Nations Group of Governmental Experts on Self-Sustaining Arms Systems (GGE-LAWS) met from 9 to 13 April 2018 in Geneva, Switzerland, with the idea of bringing together the maximum number of States to discuss prohibition of these deadly technologies with consequences that are still unknown but increasingly worrying.

➡ Russia and the United States are leading the development of these autonomous killer robots.

Learn more : Autonomous killing robots.




Bioethics. Artificial Intelligence. Robotization and massive destruction of jobs, in Las Vegas.

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In LAS VEGAS (NEVADA), 50,000 food service workers will go on strike if new contracts do not protect them against robotization / automation of their jobs. Among the worried, bartenders, waiters, doormen or even cooks.

While this protest movement is the first in Las Vegas since 1984, the claim is formulated in these terms by Geoconda Argüello-Kline, general secretary of the Culinary Union:

“We encourage innovation that can improve our jobs, but we oppose automation if it threatens to destroy it.Our industry needs to innovate, but without the need of humans, our employers need to help us stay strong, fair and competitive. “

The risks of automation are real, according to two studies cited by Gizmodo.

1/ First, there are many American travelers who would like to be served and welcomed by robots.

2/ Secondly : 58 % of hoteliers believe that by 2025, they will use robots for the household.

Learn more : Strike in Las Vegas, against robotisation.

Our position :

➡ The European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights emphasizes that the robotization resulting from the progress of the artificial intelligence should not be translated into a regression with a massive destruction of jobs. 

➡ Social exclusion must not have its origin from a massive robotisation of the whole society’s jobs. 

➡ The institutions of the European Union must anticipate this perspective of robotization, current in the United States, to guarantee European citizens an area of justice, peace and economic security.


Las Vegas and destruction of jobs by robotization.

A robot helping a homeless person !

Bioethics. Surrogacy. Hearings of the European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights at the National Consultations on Bioethics, PARIS, FRANCE.

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FRANCE : The European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights (in abbreviated : “OENDDF”) was heard on April 6, 2018 by the National Consultative Committee of Ethics (in abbreviated : “CCNE”), within the framework of the National Consultations on Bioethics, in FRANCE.

➡ These hearings in PARIS are part of a whole system deployed by the CCNE in addition to citizen debates, contributions on the website, a citizen committee – composed of selected people by a polling institute – and contributions from institutional ethics committees such as Inserm, CNRS, Academy of Medicine and Academy of Sciences.

The series of hearings conducted by the CCNE concerns Associations such as the OENDDF but also interest Groups, learned societies, faith-based organizations and health professionals.

The CCNE will summarize all these contributions and submit them to OPECST and the government on 4 June 2018.

It will give its own opinion in July 2018 on a number of major issues raised during these National Consultations on Bioethics.

The two representatives of the European Observatory for Non-Discrimination and Fundamental Rights, Mr. Didier BOYENVAL, Lawyer, and Mrs. Christine MONTY, President, spoke before a delegation of 4 members of CCNE, on the themes of Surrogacy and medically assisted Procreation, supposed in France being “for all”.

Drawing on the field experience acquired in the field of social exclusion, they presented a Study on the consequences of breaking bonds of biological filiation, carried out by the Audencia Business School, with a sample of 122 people who had their biological filiation basically broken.

They highlighted figures from this Study and they showed that the break of biological filiation led to the violation of intangible principles of different international Treaties, such as the right to the psychological integrity of the child, the importance of the identity of the child, therisk of discrimination of the child from birth, the best interests of the child, the importance of the dignity of the woman and the legal impossibility of commercialization of woman’s body.

Recalling the relationship with slavery and the late signature of an international Convention on the abolition of slavery on September 25, 1926 (but for France, pioneer of Human Rights, from 1794, in the French Colonies), they argued in favor of a Convention for Universal Abolition of surrogacy,  and they presented the general outline of a convention of this type.

After responding interactively to the questions of CCNE Members, the two representatives of the OENDDF commented on the recommendations of the Report of the Special Rapporteur on the sale and sexual exploitation of children to the Council of Human Rights, 37th Session, February 26, 2018 – March 23, 2018, and they concluded the importance of withholding the prohibition of conventions and practices of surrogacy and to refuse any form of regulation, even strict, especially in view of consequences of the Study and the intangible principles of the international Treaties cited.

➡ You will find below our Study on the the consequences of breaking bonds of biological filiation :

Learn more : Study on the consequences of breaking bonds of biological filiation. Published on 4th April 2018.

Bioethics. Surrogacy. Surrogacy market was expected to reach $ 4.8 billion in 2017 worldwide. Woman’s body is not for sale.

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1/ In the framework of Surrogacy (also : Surrogate motherhood, gestational Surrogacy), and according to a Transparency Market Research study, surrogacy market was expected to reach $ 4.8 billion in 2017 worldwide.

A mother must not become a simple means to transfer international funds.

Woman’s body is not for sale.

2/ Extract from the Website : “Justice and respect for chilhood”, Surrogacy is a big Market :

  • “The child is conceptualized as an investment vehicle. A Chinese person wants to transfer wealth to Japan, but he can not because the law of his country and the law of the country are opposed. These laws also prevent him from obtaining Japanese nationality. The pragmatic solution is to find an investment vehicle : it will be the child, the means being Surrogacy. It is enough to take Chinese genetic material, ie sperm, to put it in the belly of any Japanese woman and the child that will result will have dual nationality. The father will then use it to transfer his goods to Japan. The child is an investment vehicle, the mother, a means and Surrogacy is a simple mechanism to buy the nationality and the legal system of a country. This service is very expensive. More generally, Surrogacy is a colossal market (…)”.