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Defending life from the moment of conception

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15 March 2005

15 March 2005

15 March 2005 Tony Blair has said that abortion should not become a general election issue after Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor issued a letter encouraging Catholics to question parliamentary candidates on a number of policy issues, including respect for life.

At a press conference yesterday, Cardinal O'Connor said: "It is very important that this debate has been opened into the public arena, both in the lead-up to and after the election. Abortion, for Catholics, is a very key issue, we are totally opposed to it."

[Sky News, 15 March ] In a press release, Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's political secretary warned that pro-abortion MPs were using late-term abortion to try to enshrine a right to abortion in law.

He also warned that the government is currently pressing ahead to legalise passive euthanasia and that, if the Mental Capacity Bill's euthanasia nature is not reversed, it "threatens to destroy the Hippocratic tradition of medical ethics in this country."

[SPUC press release ] 40 people from the UK have ended their lives at the Swiss assisted suicide clinic run by Dignitas, The Sunday Times reports.

Michael Irwin of Friends at the End (FATE) a Scottish group that openly assists people in going to Switzerland, said that nine out of the 10 Britons he has helped to join Dignitas have committed suicide. Dignitas is thought to have some 800 British members.

[The Sunday Times, 13 March ] Research to be presented at the HFEA conference is to be used to argue that children as young as three should be told if they were conceived through sperm donation. Professor Eric Blyth, a co-author of the study, argues that if parents do not tell their children until much later or the children find out from someone else it can cause psychological problems. Approximately 25,000 children have been conceived through sperm donation in the UK since 1991.

[The Independent, 13 March ] Scotland's Cardinal Keith O'Brien has called for a boycott of the National Lottery over what he described as "blatant misuse of funds."

The lottery has granted some £3.3 million to pro-abortion organisations such as Brook Advisory Centres and the FPA. Cardinal O'Brien said: "I am quite staggered at the volume of funds provided to these agencies, which is in stark contrast to the lack of support for organisations offering alternative approaches."

[The Scotsman, 14 March ] 37 people from Oregon died via physician-assisted suicide last year according to official reports.

Physicians for Compassionate Care noted that many of the small number of doctors involved actively promote assisted suicide and that psychiatric evaluation was performed in only five percent of cases.

[CWNews, 14 March ] A woman who suffered a double brainstem stroke and was believed to be in a 'vegetative state' spoke at a rally for Terri Schiavo at the weekend.

Kate Adamson was completely paralysed by the stroke and unable to communicate with medical staff when she heard them discussing whether her food and fluids should be withdrawn.

On one occasion her tube feeding was removed for eight days until her husband was able to intervene. Mrs Adamson said: "I was just like Terri...but I was alive! I could hear every word. They were saying 'shall we just not treat her?' I suffered excruciating misery in silence."

[LifeSiteNews, 14 March ] Lesley Martin, the New Zealand euthanasia campaigner who was convicted of the attempted murder of her terminally ill mother, is to take her appeal to the Supreme Court.

A court of appeal has already rejected Mrs Martin's lawyer's claims that she was suffering from a mental disorder at the time and that her 'admissions' were driven by exhaustion. Some members of the Martin family have condemned her actions, which she maintains were not criminal. [, 15 March ]

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