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Defending life from the moment of conception

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News, 19 March 2003

19 March 2003

19 March 2003 The Scottish parliament's petitions committee has agreed to act on a petition about the lack of information provided to women before abortions. The petition was presented by Ms Jane MacMaster, who works with British Victims of Abortion to support women who suffer trauma as a result of their decision to have an abortion. The committee will ask the Executive, which exercises devolved governmental powers in Scotland, for its comments on the adequacy and monitoring of information provided about the potential mental and physical health dangers of abortion, and will also seek clarification from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists as to whether it is satisfied that its guidelines are being followed. [SPUC Scotland, 19 March] A Kenyan official of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), one of the world's leading abortion promoters, has spoken out against the legalisation of abortion in his country. Mr Coulibaly Sidiki, a UNFPA country representative, criticised the Kenyan health minister's support for legalised abortion [see digest for 5 March ] and said that abortion was a criminal act which should not be legalised in any circumstances. Mr Sidiki asserted: "We at UNFPA do not and will never support abortion." [East African Standard, 18 March ] However, UNFPA was one of the groups which participated in an international conference of pro-abortionists held in Kenya in 1987 which agreed that "legal, good quality abortion services should be made accessible to all women". UNFPA has distributed morning-after pills, IUDs and manual abortion kits to refugees across the world, and co-operates with coercive abortion programmes in China. [See A Way of Life, SPUC, 2002 ] A prominent Catholic expert in bioethics has said that it could be morally permissible to extract organs or stem cells from unborn babies who have died in spontaneous miscarriages. Professor Adriano Bompiani, director of the Paul VI International Centre at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Rome, told a press conference at the headquarters of Vatican Radio that the two necessary conditions were that there must be explicit maternal consent, and that "there must be no doubt whatsoever that the miscarriage was not provoked". [Zenit, 13 March ] A Catholic priest in Quebec has announced that he would rather be excommunicated than give up his support for abortion in certain circumstances. In a letter to a local newspaper, Fr Claude Fluet of the diocese of Valleyfield expressed his shock that "the most recalcitrant sectors of the Catholic Church" had tried to prevent an abortion for a nine-year-old rape victim in Nicaragua. Fr Fluet wrote: "If I am truly wrong, I would prefer excommunication rather than renounce my convictions." [LifeSite, 18 March ] The mayor of New York City, who is a well known pro-abortionist, has vetoed two bills designed to facilitate access to the abortifacient morning-after pill. Mayor Michael Bloomberg blocked laws to require all city hospitals to provide so-called emergency contraception to alleged rape victims and to oblige pharmacies to display a sign stating that they provided to drug in order to lessen the embarrassment of women who wanted to ask for it. Other pro-abortionists were disappointed at the vetoes, but the mayor claimed that the first bill was unnecessary and the second was unenforceable. [New York Post, 19 March ]

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