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Musicians accuse Amnesty of deceit over charity CD

30 August 2007

Amnesty has been accused of "duping" singers contributing to a CD released to raise money for the crisis in Darfur, Sudan, by their new pro-abortion stance. Rock for Life, a group of anti-abortion singers, claims that Amnesty, who adopted a pro-abortion policy two months after the release of the album, did not make its intentions clear to the singers at the time. Mr Erik Whittington, director of Rock for Life, said: "The human suffering going on right now in Darfur is horrific. To add insult to injury, however, using this tragic abuse of human rights to raise money for a pro-abortion organisation is hypocritical and beyond belief." Rock for Life has drawn up a list of 700 acts which are opposed to abortion, which includes Mr Bryan Ferry and the rap artist MC Hammer. [Sunday Times, 26 August]

The leader of the Catholic Church in Scotland has announced that he is resigning from Amnesty International because of their support for abortion. Cardinal Keith O'Brien, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh, wrote to the director of Amnesty International in Scotland stating his decision, which was made after Amnesty's international council decided to support the decriminalisation of abortion and the right of women to have access to it. In his statement, the cardinal said: "I hope I act in a manner which is 'pro-life' following what I believe is the teaching of Jesus Christ and the teaching of my Church. That basic and most fundamental of all human rights, the right to life is recognised by the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the document upon which Amnesty International was founded. Sadly now Amnesty International seems to be placing itself at the forefront of a campaign for a universal 'right' to abortion in contravention to that basic right to human life. For me it is a matter of conscience that I have decided to resign from Amnesty International." [Scottish bishops' conference, 28 August]

Guidelines have been proposed by the Welsh assembly to ensure that women in Wales get faster access to abortions. Such women would be able to have an abortion within a week of asking. These proposals, which include removing the practice of having two doctors consent to an abortion, are supposed to reduce "negative psychological outcomes" associated with abortions. Dr Patricia Lohr, medical director of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, said, "Being able to offer the earliest possible abortion treatment once a woman has made her decision means the procedure is less invasive for her, and it is cheaper for the NHS to provide." Anthony Ozimic, political secretary of SPUC, said, "Easier access to abortion places women under psychological pressure to have abortions, leaving them even more vulnerable." [icWales, 27 August]

A mother pregnant with twins has reported an Italian hospital for aborting her healthy twin rather than her twin suffering from Down's syndrome. After hospital staff accidentally aborted the non-Down's baby, the 38-year-old woman returned to abort the other. The hospital claimed the twins swapped places in the womb between the ultrasound and the abortion. Leading Christian Democrat Luca Volonte decried the abortion as "infanticide arising from a contempt for human life," and Senator Paolo Binetti said: "What happened in this hospital was not a medical abortion but an abortion done for the purposes of eugenics. The time has come to re-examine the abortion law." [LifeSite, 27 August and L'Osservatore Romano on Zenit, 27 August]

A pro-life group has paid tribute to Cardinal Édouard Gagnon, former president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, who died on Saturday aged 89 in Montreal. Mr Jim Hughes, national president of Campaign Life Coalition, said that Gagnon "admired the courage and the zeal of the pro-life activists he had met" and recalled that he had always been helpful to the pro-life movement in Canada. [LifeSite, 27 August]

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