UN OFFICIAL ADMITS UNDER PRESSURE THAT "REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH" EXCLUDES ABORTION

Autor: ---- Fuente: C-FAM (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute)

In and unusual exchange this week in the US Congress, among the highest ranking UN officials admitted that the term "reproductive health" does not include abortion, at least in the context of the recently decided Millennium Summit Declaration. The exchange came during a hearing of the US House Committee on International Relations when Congressman Chris Smith questioned Mark Malloch Brown, senior adviser to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. Smith asked Brown three times if "reproductive health" included access to abortion. Brown finally admitted that it did not.

The Millennium Summit Declaration, decided two weeks ago after more than a year of negotiations, calls for "universal access to reproductive health by the year 2015." Pro-abortion forces at the UN prefer that these terms remain undefined so they can be interpreted broadly later on. Though the UN has never official defined "reproductive health" as including abortion, UN agencies and powerful non-government organizations interpret the term as including abortion and use it to pressure governments to change their laws. It is therefore extremely significant that one of the highest ranking officials in the UN Secretariat has admitted before a Congressional Committee that this interpretation is wrong.

This marks another in a series of ongoing victories for pro-lifers in the UN where the debate is almost always and tediously about the advance of abortion. Pro-abortion forces wanted the new Millennium Declaration to be chock full of vaguely pro-abortion language. What they got was a single mention of reproductive health that has now been announced by Kofi Annan's right hand man as excluding abortion.

In another victory, only a few months ago, during the Commission on the Status of Women which marked the ten-year review of the original Beijing Women's Conference, the Bush Administration pushed for an amendment saying that Beijing did not create any new human rights and no right to abortion. Pandemonium ensued as powerful governments and NGOs practically fell all over themselves insisting that the US amendment was not necessary and even redundant since everyone already understood that Beijing did not create a right to abortion. Though the US amendment failed at that time, it is significant that so many countries went on the record insisting that Beijing was silent on abortion.

What is hoped is that these victories will inhibit UN agencies and commissions and powerful NGOs from misrepresenting UN documents on the question of reproductive health and abortion, something they do now with impunity.

http://www.c-fam.org/
 
 
 
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