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Buddhist Monks Back Return of Disgraced Scientist
The Korea Times, July 28, 2008
Seoul, South Korea -- South Korea's Buddhist monks have urged the government to allow disgraced scientist Hwang Woo-suk to continue his stem cell research.
"It is deplorable that research by Hwang Woo-suk and his team is suppressed unreasonably," the monks said in a resolution. "The government should approve the research in order to save a greater soul."
The resolution came ahead of the Health Ministry's decision Saturday over whether to approve Hwang's request to restart his work.
Hwang, once considered a national hero, has been on trial for alleged fraud and violation of bioethics laws after his team was found in January 2006 to have fabricated results to claim success in his study.
He was dismissed by his employer Seoul National University in March 2006 after a global furor and continues to face criminal charges.
A team at the Suam Biotechnology Institute (SBI), a Seoul research lab Hwang opened in 2006, submitted last December a request to the Health Ministry that it be allowed to begin a new embryonic stem cell research project.