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Pope warns genetic engineering risks racism

In an era of artificial procreation and human cloning, genetic engineering risks becoming a "new form of racism," the Vatican has warned in a newly updated document.

"The development of these techniques might lead to the creation of a subcategory of human beings destined, essentially, for the well-being of a few," says the document, which titled The Church in Face of Racism: For a More Fraternal Society.

This might lead to "a new and terrible form of slavery," the document continues.

The document, an update of a 1988 report, laments the return of the "eugenic temptation," which it says can be seen in the "enormous business interests" that are behind this type of experimentation.

"Governments and scientific communities will have to pay much attention in this area," the Vatican states.

The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace updated the 1988 document for the UN International Conference Against Racism, which began on Friday in Durban, South Africa.