Posted: 1/5/2003 3:38:23 PM EDT
AMSTERDAM (Jan. 4) - Clonaid, the company that claims to have produced the first human clone, said Saturday it has produced a second one - a girl born to a Dutch lesbian.
Neither baby has been confirmed to be a clone by genetic testing, and mainstream scientists are skeptical of the company's claims.
Clonaid spokeswoman Nadine Gary said in a telephone interview the child was born Friday night, but declined to say where. Clonaid vice president, Thomas Kaenzig, said the baby is a girl whose parents are two Dutch women.
''It's a homosexual couple, a lesbian couple from Holland. The baby's doing fine. They're very happy and excited about it, and so are we,'' he told Associated Press Radio, speaking from an undisclosed location in the Dominican Republic.
Gary said she expects the second baby will undergo genetic testing to show it is a clone, with DNA identical to that of its mother.
The group made a similar promise about Eve, a cloned girl purportedly born to U.S. parents on Dec. 26. But Clonaid now says the parents of that baby are balking at testing.
Brigitte Boisselier, Clonaid's chief executive and top scientist, told The Associated Press Television News on Saturday that the parents have promised to tell her Monday whether they will allow DNA testing to confirm the claim.
The second baby's name had not been revealed. In television interviews, Boisselier has said the parents of the second baby want to remain anonymous.
Spokeswoman Gary said that, while the parents are Dutch, the birth did not take place in the Netherlands, where cloning is illegal.
''The parents have Dutch nationality, but they are not in Holland,'' Gary said.
Clonaid was founded by the leader of the Raelians, a sect that believes aliens created life on Earth.
Clonaid sells ''cloning'' services and products, and may benefit from the publicity around its claims, whether they are true or false.
Scientists have successfully cloned mammals such as pigs and sheep, but the technology is not reliable and most scientists say it is difficult, unethical and risky to attempt to clone humans.
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It is my expert opinion that Clonaid and the representatives of Clonaid are FOS.
I'll believe it when they let 2 or 3 3rd party labs do dna tests