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Defending life from the moment of conception

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News, 29 September 2004

29 September 2004

29 September 2004 A Hong Kong company is to offer Chinese couples the chance to choose the gender of their children before conception. The company, which has opened an office in Hong Kong and plans to open an office in Shanghai, uses a sperm sorting technique based on electric charges and claims to offer an alternative to female infant abandonment and the abortion of baby girls. China already has a severe gender imbalance as a result of the one-child policy and the historic preference for boys. [Financial Times, 29 September ] The number of women using the morning after pill has risen since 2001, according to a report published by the Office for National Statistics. The majority obtained the morning after pill from a doctor or nurse but there was an increase in the proportion of women obtaining it from walk-in centres. Half the women who used the morning after pill last year cited condom failure as the reason for having used it. [National Office of Statistics, 29 September ] In a press release, John Smeaton, SPUC's National Director, vowed to continue the campaign against the distribution of the morning after pill to schoolchildren and to continue to raise public awareness about the abortifacient nature of the drug. [SPUC press release, 29 September] The chief of research for the UK's Motor Neurone Disease Association has backed Professor Ian Wilmut's bid to clone human embryos. Dr Brian Dickie told a conference in London that cloning could lead to a better understanding of the disease. The cloning application has been criticised by the Catholic Church in Scotland and pro-life campaigners. [The Scottish Herald, 29 September ] A poll conducted in New Zealand has found that seven out of 10 people surveyed believe that parents should be informed if their daughter sought an abortion even if the girl did not want them to know. 60.7% believed that it should be compulsory for doctors to inform parents. Abortion is the only non-emergency medical procedure that does not require parental consent and Judith Collins MP has called for a change in the law, claiming that the government is 'seriously out of touch' with parents. [New Zealand Herald, 29 September ] The US Justice Department has said that it will appeal a Nebraska judge's ruling that the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban is unconstitutional. Three federal judges have declared the ban unconstitutional and the Justice Department has already begun an appeal of the San Francisco ruling. It is expected that the dispute will eventually reach the US Supreme Court. [The Guardian, 28 September ] A 23-year-old woman said that she feared for the life of her unborn baby when she was arrested after refusing to stop swearing loudly into a mobile phone. Sakinah Aaron was five months pregnant when a police officer in Washington forced her onto the ground and put his knee in her back. A doctor said that her unborn child had not been harmed. [Breaking News, 28 September ] A pro-family campaigner from Northern Ireland has called for an end to school sex education programmes. Jennifer Barber made the call after the release of a damning study on the work of US sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, which described him as a 'paedophile propagandist' whose work consisted of 'illegal, and criminal acts masquerading as science'. Ms Barber said that the programmes should be stopped because organisations such as Family Planning Associations used Kinsey's ideology. She added that those who objected to his work, which involved abusive experiments on hundreds of children, were accused of being 'religious fundamentalists' and 'a threat to a democratic society' at the time. [Derry Journal, 28 September ] C-FAM has reported on the inflated salaries paid by the International Planned Parenthood Federation to its executives, in spite of claims by the organisation that its loss of US funding has caused the deaths of women in the developing world. According to financial documents, Gloria Feldt the IPPF president earned $460,277 in 2003 whilst the Chief Operating Officer earned $204,846. The documents also revealed that IPPF intends to launch a major campaign to legalise abortion throughout Latin America, using the services of the erroneously named 'Catholics' for a Free Choice. [C-Fam, 24 September ]

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