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Defending life
from conception to natural death


News, 10 May 2004

10 May 2004

10 May 2004 The judicial review of a late-term abortion carried out because the baby had cleft palate has been delayed indefinitely at the request of the West Mercia Police. The police have re-opened a criminal investigation into the abortion, which was carried out by Dr Michael Cohn at Hereford County Hospital in 2001, and asked for a postponement of the review so that it would not prejudice the investigation. Julia Millington, political director of the Pro-Life Party, commented: "There are bigger issues at stake than this individual case, specifically concerning late abortions for disability... We hope the court will be able to hear the evidence regardless of the result of the criminal investigation." [The Telegraph, 9 May ] Nancy Reagan has spoken out in favour of embryonic stem cell research at a fund-raising event for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Mrs Reagan spoke of her husband's Alzheimer's Disease, saying: "Because of this I'm determined to do whatever I can to save other families from this pain. I just don't see how we can turn our backs on this." [Medical News Today, 10 May ] A man from Albany, US, has been imprisoned for assault and abortion after he stabbed his pregnant girlfriend. Both mother and baby survived the attack but the abortion charge covers an attempt to kill an unborn child. [, 8 May ] A medical technician who was dismissed for refusing to drive a woman to an abortion facility is to sue her former employers for religious discrimination. The ambulance company concerned claims that Stephanie Adamson was fired for creating a threat to the safety of a patient. [, 10 May ] The number of young people in the Highlands of Scotland is projected to drop by 50% by 2018, The Herald reports. David Alston, chair of the Highland Council's renewing democracy and community planning committee said: "The fundamental problem is that we are not replacing the population because of the falling fertility rate." The tendency of people to retire to the Highlands whilst young people migrate is another problem that has been cited. [The Herald, 10 May ] The US Silver Ring Thing movement that promotes abstinence among teenagers is to tour the UK and Ireland with its show. The show uses rap, music and stand-up comedy to put across its message and is among a number of movements in the US promoting the abstinence message. The UK has the highest pregnancy rate in Europe and STI rates are rising sharply. [The Independent, 9 May ] A new government report has said that teenage pregnancy rates could be cut by encouraging children to engage in alternatives to sexual intercourse such as oral sex, The Observer reports. Those behind the sex education scheme entitled A Pause, which is set to be recommended to schools through England and Wales, deny that it encourages oral sex, saying that it teaches teenagers assertiveness and identifies 'stopping points' before full intercourse. [The Observer, 9 May ] An 18-year-old high school student has been charged with murder after allegedly killing his unborn twin sons. Gerardo Flores allegedly beat his pregnant girlfriend, after which she began bleeding and gave birth before an ambulance arrived. Gerardo Flores faces a jail term from between five years and life if convicted. [The Guardian, 8 May ] A US couple have been ordered not to have any more children in a court case that has been condemned as 'blatantly unconstitutional.' The couple have a history of drug abuse and their four children are in foster care, three of whom had tested positive for cocaine. Judge Marilyn O'Connor, who gave the order, said: "This court believes the constitutional right to have children is overcome when society must bear the financial and everyday burden of care." The couple are not obliged to use contraception or undergo an abortion in the case of pregnancy but could be jailed for contempt of court if they violate the ruling. [The Guardian, 8 May ] The former president of Physicians for Compassionate Care, an Oregon anti-euthanasia group, has described the case of a terminally ill man with a history of depression who was considered eligible for assisted suicide as 'a botched case.' Dr Gregory Hamilton said: "There aren't any effective safeguards for the mentally ill in Oregon when it comes to assisted suicide." 171 people have died by assisted suicide in Oregon since it became legal six years ago. Psychological evaluation is not a legal requirement. [Oregon Live, 7 May ] A Chinese woman who applied for asylum in the US after she tried to prevent a forced abortion has been granted a second attempt after her first application failed. A US District Court judged that the Department of Homeland Security had rushed Mei Ying Fong's deportation, denying her the opportunity to appeal. Fong feared for her safety in her country as she had already been jailed for her actions. Her case is unusual as immigrants are rarely granted a second chance to live in the US. [, 7 May ] The Chilean Minister of Health has warned mayors that they face sanctions if they refuse to distribute the abortifacient morning after pill in their towns. Cardinal Francisco Errazuriz of Santiago has been criticised by Pedro Garcia the Minister of Health for calling on the mayors to reject the morning after pill. Mr Garcia said that the Cardinal's comments "could be interpreted as an act of rebellion by the Church." [CWNews, 7 May ]

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