6.8 million females across India could be “missing” between 2017-2030 according to research conducted by academics from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia. Michael Robinson, SPUC Director of Communications said: “The “missing” girls are believed to be the result of discriminatory sex-selective abortion which remains rife across countries such as India. Abortion is being used as a tool to weed out and kill the female population, simply for having the audacity to be female.”

India outlawed sex-selective abortion in 1994; however, the practice of killing unborn females who may be viewed as a financial or cultural burden, and instead favoring the prospect of a male child is still common practice across some Indian regions.

As a result, India has experienced severely skewed sex-ratios since the 1970’s. According to the report, India’s cultural preference for males has led to a surge of discriminatory practices such as sex-selective abortion and the provision of better nutrition, medical care and education for males.

The study, published earlier this week, found that “families where a son is born are more likely to stop having children than families where a girl is born” and that currently in India, 21 million girls are unwanted by their families.

It is now expected that there will be 6.8 million fewer female births in India between 2017-2030.

Female foeticide

In 2019, SPUC reported on the escalation in female foeticide occurring in India when a report from the Population Research Institute (PRI) found that 15.8 million girls have been killed in the womb through sex-selective abortions in India since 1990.

The PRI report stated that“Due to a strong, culturally-rooted preference for sons in many parts of the world, millions of girls have been selectively aborted merely because their parents had wanted a boy instead. Since the introduction of ultrasound technology made it easy and affordable for parents to find out the sex of their child prior to birth, the practice of sex-selective abortion became widespread. Most of these selective terminations have occurred either in China or India.”

Is sex-selective abortion occurring in the United Kingdom?

Evidence of sex-selective abortion seeping into the United Kingdom has come to light in recent years.

In 2018, Labour MP, Naz Shah, Shadow Women and Equalities Minister, warned that early blood tests were being used across the UK within ethnic minority communities who had a ‘cultural preference for boys’ to abort pregnancies based on sex.

The Nuffield Council on Bioethics, has warned that increasingly widespread Non-Invasive Pre-natal Testing (NIPT), involving early blood tests, could turn the UK into a haven for sex-selective abortions.

SPUC has also stressed that the extreme abortion regime imposed on Northern Ireland by Westminster earlier this year has the capacity to facilitate sex-selective abortion through the use of early blood tests and the unrestricted killing of unborn babies for any reason until the 12th week of pregnancy.

SPUC’s Michael Robinson added: “So often is abortion falsely promoted as a ‘woman’s right’ yet we can clearly see how abortion violently targets, weeds out and kills members of the female population.

“It is vital that we make efforts to promote the value and equality of women and girls to combat this assault on their very existence. Abortion is discriminatory in nature and it is time we wake up to the gendercide silently taking place in our world.”

 

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