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Defending life from the moment of conception

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8 November 2004

8 November 2004

8 November 2004 The King of Nepal has pardoned 12 women prisoners who were convicted of having abortions prior to the legalisation of abortion in 2002. The women were part of a group of some 200 prisoners freed to mark Constitution Day. [BBC, 8 November ] The UK government funded Nepal's new abortion law, providing financial assistance in 'developing policies, implementation strategies, protocols and curricula for safe abortion services.' Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's political secretary commented: "Millions of Nepalese women don't have access to safe water and can't read or write, yet the Blair government and its pro-abortion allies give priority to killing their unborn children." [Pro-Life Times, September] Surgeons at Leiden University in the Netherlands have transplanted a woman's ovary into her arm whilst she undergoes cancer treatment. Dr James Catt, an embryologist from Leeds, said that the woman would be restricted to IVF treatment if she wanted to become pregnant, as the ovary in the arm would have to be stimulated to produce an egg that would then be extracted. [BBC, 8 November ] The Times of London has reported that couples are getting around China's one-child policy by falsifying the records of the second child to give the impression of having had twins. The article claims that atrocities against families who break the one-child policy such as infanticide, forced abortion and mass sterilisation are 'rare' and that the Chinese authorities may have to change the policy, particularly in light of the rapidly ageing population. [The Times, 8 November ] Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's political secretary commented: "Media in the West have been reporting for many years that the one-child policy is 'about to change', that human rights violations under the policy are 'rare abuses' and that the policy has now been 'relaxed'. These reports have always been proven to be false, because they are a combination of Chinese Communist propaganda and the Western liberal media's sympathy for population control." Australia's Federal Opposition has asked the Government to clarify whether or not it intends to introduce legislation to change the abortion law. The challenge follows comments by several Coalition MPs about the number of abortions and late-term abortions. Kevin Rudd MP said: "The ball lies in John Howard's court and Tony Abbott's court, if they're serious about legislation, bring it forward." [Medical News Today, 7 November ] Cardinal Keith O'Brien and Archbishop Mario Conti of Glasgow have renewed their criticism of Scottish Executive sex education plans, stating that it risks 'undermining the morality of a generation.' In a sermon, Cardinal O'Brien warned: "We are in danger of denying our young people the guidance and the tools they need to be able to make sound moral judgements about how they behave." Sex education plans include distributing the morning after pill to 14-year-old girls. [Scotland on Sunday, 7 November ] The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland has called for a debate on euthanasia, stating: "There may be examples where the tension between life as a gift from God, and the belief that God does not want people to suffer becomes so unbearable that it leads to a re-examination of the question." Dr Alison Elliot's comments were welcomed by Jeremy Purvis MSP, who will put forward a bill to legalise euthanasia next year, and Dr Libby Wilson of the pro-euthanasia group Friends At the End. However, Mike Judge of the Christian Institute said: "Euthanasia is very dangerous and we know from Holland that it puts pressure on the elderly. I don't think it's possible to square being a Christian with supporting it." [The Sunday Herald, 7 November ] Boys as young as 11 being giving 'condom cards' by schools entitling them to free condoms from family planning clinics and chemists, as part of a growing scheme to cut teenage pregnancies. Girls are being given 'U' cards to indicate to medical receptionists that they need an urgent appointment. Simon Burns, the Conservative Party health spokesman said: "There is something very wrong with 11-year-old boys and girls engaging in sexual activity, particularly as it is illegal." [The Daily Mail, 6 November ] A study published in the Journal of Anxiety Disorders has suggested that women how undergo abortions are more likely to suffer anxiety-related problems compared with women who carry unintended pregnancies to term. Researchers looked at data relating to 10,847 women without a prior history of anxiety who experienced an unintended pregnancy and found that women who aborted were 30% more likely to report symptoms associated with generalised anxiety disorder. [CWNews, 5 November ] A Canadian euthanasia campaigner has been acquitted of two counts of assisted suicide. Evelyn Martens pleaded not guilty to assisting the suicide of Monique Charest, 64, who was not terminally ill and Leyanne Burchell, 57. Ms Martens told a police officer posing as Ms Charest's goddaughter that she had been present at the woman's suicide and she was recorded in police transcripts admitting her intention to help her commit suicide. [, 5 November ] An article in the Sunday Telegraph has reported that 14 of the 75 MPs who supported a recent failed ban on smacking children took part in the 1990 Commons debate on abortion and all voted in favour of abortion. Ross Clark commented that these MPs believe that "at birth children become almost sacred objects, who must be protected from the hazards of normal parenting. But up until birth children are mere chattels of their mothers, to be disposed of at whim should they constitute an inconvenience." [The Sunday Telegraph, 7 November]

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