The IBC met in Beirut to focus on the question of “new bioethical issues”. Topics included: “respect for human dignity, physical integrity and freedom of consent” as well as issues focusing on “individual responsibility”, “modern parenting” and “new concepts in terms of family structures” (post-mortem use of sperm, eggs and embryos). Other “tricky” topics included medically assisted reproduction, genetic engineering and the preservation of eggs as well as cloning and embryo stem cells.
Marwan Hamadé, Lebanon’s Minister of Education and Higher Education, who opened the four days of talks, highlighted the difficulty in finding “concrete” responses to bioethical issues: “bioethics is primarily a reflection, it’s about asking questions, he declared. But it’s our duty to promote it. It must incorporate the scientific and technical bases needed to ask basic questions and promote an ethics of freedom and responsibility”. He also pointed out that one of the roles of bioethics is to “reconcile the opposition of ‘legality’, simple compliance with laws, with ‘legitimacy’, which refers to the idea of equity, justice, and calls on values considered superior to those of positive law”.
 UNESCO International Bioethics Committee (IBC): Created in 1993, the International Bioethics Committee (IBC) is a body of 36 independent experts that follows progress in the life sciences and its applications in order to ensure respect for human dignity and freedom. The IBC is the only international bioethics think tank.