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Defending life from the moment of conception

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UK government plans to bankroll the worldwide abortion movement

6 February 2006

The British government is to become the founder donor of a fund intended to cover the funds withheld by the US government to organisations that promote abortion overseas. The Department for International Development will contribute £3 million over two years. Gareth Thomas the international development minister claims that reducing the number of unsafe abortions is a critical part of the UN Millennium Development Goal on reducing maternal mortality. [The Guardian, 6 February] A spokesperson from SPUC commented: "The UK Government has tried to justify its bankrolling of the worldwide abortion movement with the claim that safe and legal abortion is necessary to protect women's health, yet millions of women around the world still don't have access to safe water and can't read or write while the Blair government gives priority to killing their unborn children."

A New York man has been charged with abortion after beating his pregnant girlfriend, Reuters reports. Tavious Hooks, 25, assaulted Lucianna Best, 23, when she was nine months pregnant but her baby was born alive after medical intervention to prevent a miscarriage. However, the law states that a person can be charged with committing an abortional act whether or not the baby survives the attack. [Reuters, 3 February]

A lawyer who represented two women when they suffered psychological damage following an RU-486 abortion has warned the Senate that legalising the abortion drug in Australia will prompt many legal cases against doctors. Charles Francis said: "Such trauma is likely to occur more frequently with the use of RU-486 where the woman will often be aborting at home. It would be up to her to check the foetus she had aborted and the foetal parts." [The Age, 5 February]

Pope Benedict XVI has praised the work of Italy's Movement for Life on the occasion of the Italian Church's annual Day for Life. "Every human life in itself always deserves to be defended and encouraged," Pope Benedict told a crowd of supporters who gathered in St Peter's Square waving balloons and banners. [Reuters, 5 February]

Researchers from York University are hoping to build bone structures from umbilical cord blood as part of a three-year project backed by the European Commission. Two million units of cord blood are currently banked in Europe and are primarily used for transfusions and leukaemia treatment. [BBC, 5 February]

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