A world without Down's syndrome? 90% of children diagnosed are aborted - and it could get even worse
30 September 2016
Actress Sally Phillips with her son, Olly: "I was told it was a tragedy and actually it's a comedy." Photo: BBC
The BBC has published a magazine feature on actress Sally Phillips and her upcoming documentary, "A world without Down's syndrome?"
The piece says that ninety per cent of people in the UK who know their child has Down's syndrome will have an abortion. It also expresses concerns that the new NIPT (non-invasive prenatal blood test) will increase the numbers still further.
Sally Phillips, famous for her roles in Bridget Jones and Miranda, recounts the doctor saying ,"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry" and the nurse crying when her son Olly was diagnosed with Down's syndrome 10 days after his birth. But she says that life with Olly is not what they expected.
"I was told it was a tragedy and actually it's a comedy. It's like a sitcom where something appears to go wrong but there's nothing bad at the end of it."
The article also links to the TED talk given by Karen Gaffney, a 38 year old American woman with Down’s syndrome, who features in the documentary.
Pro-life activists launch new petition promoting total abortion ban in Russia
Protesters place 600 lamps in the shape of an unborn baby at 12 weeks. Photo: Pavel Lisitsyn / Sputnik
The Russian television network RT reports that a new petition to ban abortion in Russia has been backed by over 300,000 people, including the children's rights ombudsman and religious leaders.
The group, "For Life" say that their petition was created in co-operation with the Russian Orthodox Church, and that they seek a complete ban on induced abortion, including the morning-after pill. The petition was signed by Patriarch Krill of the Russian Orthodox Church, and the Supreme Mufti of Russia and the Chief Rabbi have expressed support.
The group intends to present the petition to President Putin when it reaches one million signatures. The Express, which also covered the story, reports that Mr Putin is known to pay close attention to the counsel of senior religious figures, and that the demands are backed by key figures in parliament.
Russia plans to ban "baby boxes" for abandoned infants
The BBC has also covered the pro-life petition in Russia, adding that it calls for abortion to be removed from the national health insurance system.
It links this to news that the Russian parliament is set to debate a draft bill which would ban boxes where mothers can anonymously leave a baby at a maternity unit. Russia appears to be responding to condemnation from the UN, which in a 2014 report urged the country to "undertake all the measures necessary to not allow baby boxes and to promote alternatives."
Critics have warned that a ban will mean more babies abandoned and left to die.
President of Chile tries to push through abortion legislation
The president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, is attempting to legalise abortion in the country, against stiff opposition.
The BBC reports that Chile is one of only six countries in the world where abortion is completely illegal. A proposal to legalise it in some circumstances has been passed by the country's Congress, but needs Senate approval to become law.
However, the proposal remains very controversial. An opposition rally at the beginning of September attracted tens of thousands of people. One attendee speaks of how she has never recovered from being forced to have an abortion by her family, after being raped at the age of 12 by a cousin.
She told the BBC: "In my case, if I had the choice, I would have had my daughter. But it was't my choice. Abortion scars you for life- before and after. Nothing good comes out of abortion- nothing, nothing."