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Defending life from the moment of conception

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News, 22 July 2002

22 July 2002

22 July 2002 Official statistics have indicated that there were 1.3% fewer unborn children killed in registered abortions in Germany during the first quarter of this year than during the same period last year. According to figures released by the German federal statistics institute, 35,676 unborn children were aborted in Germany between January and March this year. Of these, 4.9% were killed by the RU-486 abortion drug. Use of RU-486 in Germany rose by 44% between 2000 and 2001. [Reuters, 18 July; via Yahoo! News ] Police in Scotland have launched an investigation after what appeared to be the body of a foetus was found at a sewage treatment plant in Dingwall, Ross-shire. A spokesman for Scottish Water, the company which operates the plant, said that the worker who made the discovery was "very upset" and had been offered counselling. Ian Murray, head of SPUC Scotland, pointed out: "33 babies die every day in abortions in Scotland, but this goes unreported in the media." [Associated Newspapers, 20 July ; SPUC] Scientists have predicted that a simple blood test to diagnose pre-eclampsia in pregnant women could be on the market within three years. Pre-eclampsia affects around 4% of pregnant women and, if not controlled, can lead to both maternal and foetal death. Professor Lucilla Poston, one of the authors of the study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, said that women who took anti-oxidants early in pregnancy could reduce their risks of developing pre-eclampsia by as much as 75%. [BBC News online, 22 July ] A criminologist in Vancouver, Canada, has claimed that a worldwide underground assisted suicide movement exists. Russel Ogden, who has been studying euthanasia for more than 10 years, claims that there is a network of people who help terminally ill people to commit suicide. He claims that the network is organised with an infrastructure and operates a system of referrals, consultations and house calls. Anne Mullins, another Canadian expert on assisted suicide, has compared underground assisted suicides with the "underground contraception counterculture" that was part of the movement to legalise contraception in Canada in the early and mid-1900s. [Canadian Press, 18 July ] A symposium on the abortifacient morning-after pill in a Presbyterian church in Los Angeles, California, was due to be picketed by young pro-lifers over the weekend. The symposium was organised by the California Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (CARAL). Danielle White, a member of the pro-life group called Survivors, said that CARAL was deceiving women because: "The morning-after pill's primary function is not as a contraceptive. These deadly pills are abortifacients, causing chemical abortions." [US Newswire, 19 July; via Northern Light ]

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