UN-EU MEETING SCENE OF ATTACKS ON CHRISTIANITY

Autor: Douglas A. Sylva Fuente: C-FAM (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute)

Over 60 abortion rights groups have used this week’s European Population Forum in Geneva to stage an attack on the Bush administration and the Roman Catholic Church for their “religious fundamentalism” in insisting that international development programs do not promote abortion. These criticisms, made in a “declaration” released at the forum and in speeches delivered by the heads of influential non governmental organizations, are the latest attacks in what now appears to be a sustained campaign to blunt all Christian ethics from international affairs and to supplant US international influence with that of the more secular European Union.

The declaration was signed by groups including “Catholics” for a Free Choice, Family Care International, and the Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

According to Reuters news service, the declaration makes the now familiar charge that the US is guilty of killing women by denying US funds to groups that promote or perform abortions overseas, and by insisting that a portion of funds for international AIDS prevention be spent on abstinence programs. Reuters also reports that, “Bush, accused by critics of promoting the cause of Christian fundamentalists, has withheld about $35 million in funding to the UN Population Fund and the World Health Organization, which do not exclude abortion from their programs. US delegates, including representatives of Protestant anti-abortion groups and Catholics backing Vatican policies, have brought near-collapse to international gatherings on children’s rights, development and population by opposing any language that might allow for abortion or contraception.”

Jill Sheffield, president of Family Care International, said in a speech at the Forum that “The White House (and the Vatican), and a range of other right-wing fundamentalist and religious groups, are working to turn back the clock…” Steven Sinding, president of International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), declared that enemies of the reproductive rights agenda must be countered by “discrediting their pseudo-science and unmasking their ideological motives. It is essential to demonstrate the truly dangerous consequences of their approach.”

Another concern voiced at the Forum by both non governmental organizations and the UN Population Fund, which co-sponsored the event, was that declines in both worldwide fertility rates and population growth rates would temper international enthusiasm for further population control efforts.

Werner Fornos, president of the Population Institute, wrote in the January 14 International Herald Tribune that, despite what “religious extremists” say, “the international community must clearly understand that to achieve an improved quality of life for all, now is the time to accelerate population stabilization efforts, rather than to retreat from them.”

Ironically, one the major topics discussed at the Forum was the drastic societal consequences of the current population decline in Europe.
http://www.c-fam.org/FAX/Volume_7/faxv7n4.html
 
 
 
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