Pro-lifers arrested in Tiananmen Square
8 August 2008
American protestors against China's one-child policy have been arrested and detained in Beijing. Mr Michael McMonagle, national director of Generation Life, Boise, Idaho, Rev Pat Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition, Washington DC, and Ms Brandi Swindell, also of Generation Life, were kneeling outside the Mao Zedong mausoleum yesterday when police pulled them across a road and took them into custody. They may be being held until they are due to leave China. The three were also questioned by police on Wednesday. [LifeNews, 7 August] Young people have been protesting against the one-child policy at the Chinese embassy in London. Members of SPUC's youth and student division are silently holding a banner drawing attention to forced abortions. Fiorella Nash, event coordinator, said: "As a mother, it is incredible to me that any government regards itself as having a right to prevent women from having children. Western nations are complicit in this policy because they fund UN agencies which work alongside Chinese population controllers." [SPUC, 8 August] President Bush mentioned imprisoned human rights activists in China on his way to the Olympic games there. Our source points out that Mr Chen Guangcheng is detained for his opposition to forced abortion. [LifeNews, 7 August]
Abortion can raise the risk of subsequent maternal depression according to Norwegian research on nearly 5,800 women. The authors of the report in the Scandinavian Journal of Public Health recommend post-abortion counselling. A recently-published survey of women buying abortion drugs online found that 30% had negative feelings. A 2005 New Zealand study also suggested that abortion made depression more likely. [LifeNews, 7 August] Post-abortion counselling is provided in Britain by British Victims of Abortion.
The potential benefits of embryo research outweigh ethical objections, a scientist was due to say yesterday in a lecture at Cardiff University, Wales. Dr Arwyn Jones is quoted as saying: "Some people believe a fertilised egg is the beginning of life and should not be tampered with in any shape or form. That is very much the view from Rome and from the White House. The majority of scientists working in the field would totally disagree." There had to be strict rules on embryo and stem cell research. An SPUC spokesman was quoted as saying: "The potential for stem cell research is quite amazing and research on ethically obtained stem cells is already showing results. But with embryonic stem cells the more serious issue is the destruction of human life. You can no more justify it than you can any other abuse of a human being." [Red Orbit, 7 August]