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Defending life from the moment of conception

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News, 26 May 2000

26 May 2000

26 May 2000 The European Union's patent office has rejected a patent for a mixture of lethal substances for euthanasia. Michigan State University had applied for a patent for what was officially called its euthanasia cocktail and refused to remove the specification for the administering of the substances to human beings. However, following appeals from the German Christian Democratic Unions and the hospice foundation in Dortmund, the patent has been re-formulated so that it only applies to animals. [Zenit news agency, Berlin, 24 May] Submissions in favour of abortion have been made to the Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution in Ireland. The Irish Congress of Trade Unions told the committee, which was set up to look into the abortion issue, that legislation should be introduced giving effect to the Supreme Court decision in the so-called X case which allowed abortion where there is a real and substantial risk to the life of the mother, including her possible suicide. The Congress also suggested that there should be no time limits on the termination of pregnancy when the mother's life is at risk. The Irish Family Planning Association recommended that the right to life enshrined in the Irish constitution should be amended so as to refer only to those who are born. [Irish Times, 25 May] Pro-abortionists in the US House of Representatives have backed away from seeking a vote on an endorsement of Roe vs Wade. A vote was expected yesterday on whether to back the amendment to the partial-birth abortion ban passed by the Senate last October, which endorsed Roe vs Wade by 51 votes to 47. Douglas Johnson, of National Right to Life, said that any such vote in the House would probably have been lost. (A Gallup poll taken almost two months ago found that 69% of Americans believe that abortion should be illegal in most cases after the first three months of pregnancy, but Roe vs Wade gave women the right to abortion on demand for the first six months of pregnancy and allowed abortions in the last three months for reasons of the emotional health of the mother.) [National Right to Life, 25 May; from Pro-Life Infonet] The National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League has endorsed Hillary Clinton's campaign in New York's US Senate race. New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani, a well-known pro-abortionist, dropped out of the race last Friday, and new contender Rick Lazio, though also pro-abortion, is against partial-birth abortions and state subsidies for abortion. Mrs Clinton has indicated that she will make abortion an important issue in the campaign and said, "New Yorkers will have a clear choice and ... will always be able to count on me to protect a woman's right to choose in the Senate." Ken Diem, leader of the Right to Life party in New York, has announced that his party will be fielding a candidate in the election. He rejected the assertion that Republican congressman Rick Lazio was a foe of abortion and said, "He's a very proud pro-choice Catholic, which makes him totally unacceptable." [New York Times, from Pro-Life Infonet, 25 May; and private sources] The Norwegian Minister of Health has said that girls under 16 should not have to inform their parents before having an abortion. He said that the present law, which stipulates that parents should usually be able to voice their opinions, can "cause conflicts". [Aftenposten online, Oslo, 25 May]

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