Feature

Who will buy this wonderful infant?

The week's news at a glance.

Belgium

A Belgian woman has sold a baby on the Internet, said Rachel Crivellaro in Brussels’ La Libre Belgique. And now Belgium must figure out how to prevent such a horror from happening again. The woman had contracted with a Belgian couple to bear a child for them—the product of her egg and the man’s sperm—for a fee. After pocketing their money, she told the expectant parents she had miscarried—and then she sold the little girl to a Dutch couple over the Internet. Now both couples are suing for custody, and the law is unclear about whose rights should prevail. So Belgian politicians are in a dither to pass laws that will regulate surrogacy. But how? Proposals “range from an outright ban on the practice to a hands-off approach.” One thing we know: We won’t follow the U.S., “where surrogate motherhood agreements are adjudicated like any other contract.” In Belgium, thank goodness, “the impersonal commercialization of an embryo is inconceivable.”

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