Plastinazione cadaveri in mostra: L’Irlanda dice no

La Commissione per i diritti umani irlandese dovrebbe esaminare la mostra riguardante la plastinazione dei corpi perchè ritiene che possa incidere su alcune questioni etiche.

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The Irish Human Rights Commission should examine the Bodies exhibition in Dublin, where human bodies are preserved and on display, because it raises serious ethical questions, a Fine Gael MEP said yesterday.

The exhibition opened at the Ambassador Theatre yesterday. Several million people throughout Europe have already viewed its collection of real human bodies; many of them showing off muscles and organs and exposed brains, preserved by a special process.

“The display of the remains of Chinese human beings as art raises serious ethical questions,” said MEP Gay Mitchell.

“How did these individuals die? Were their relatives informed or was permission sought for their loved ones to be displayed as art?” he asked.

“I am calling on Ireland’s Human Rights Commission to visit the Ambassador and examine this exhibition to determine if it is ethical and in keeping with international human rights norms,” he said.

Mr Mitchell said he had not yet visited the exhibition and he was not going to be judge and jury about it, but he believed ethical human rights norms should be examined in relation to it.

He said everything in China was run by the state and he wanted to know the ancestry of the bodies, how old they were were, and had the state a right to take bodies in this way and display them around the world.

He was surprised that no-one had questioned the display already, but he believed an independent body like the Human Rights Commission needed to examine the exhibition.

Earlier, the medical director of the exhibition, Dr Roy Glover, a retired anatomy professor at the University of Michigan, dismissed suggestions that the bodies were illegally obtained or were those of political prisoners.

The bodies come from a Chinese medical university, he said. He added that letters of indemnification, Chinese government documents and the exhibition’s contract with the university, all guarantee the people died of natural causes.

He said they weren’t executed and weren’t prisoners; the bodies were unidentified and unclaimed.

The exhibition website said the people involved died from natural causes.

“However, in a number of cases throughout the exhibition, our medical director has been able to identify the obvious medical problems that the specimen suffered from, and, where appropriate, it is so indicated.

“For example, a lung is displayed and the disease is identified as emphysema, so those who see it can gain a clearer understanding of this disease.

“It is important to note that the law prohibits the disclosure of any information regarding the specimen’s identity and/or cause of death,” it said.

The exhibition claims the displays will “enlighten, empower, fascinate and inspire”.

Tickets are €20 for adults and €12 for children.

- DON LAVERY, Indipendent.ie, 25 January 2009

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