Pro life governments and groups make progress at UN human rights meeting
8 April 2004
Pro-life governments and groups make progress at UN human rights meeting Geneva, 8 April 2004--Pro-life governments and lobbyists have been successful to date at the current 60th session of the United Nations' commission on human rights in Geneva, Switzerland. Australia, Canada and the European Union wanted to broaden the scope of a draft resolution on sexual and reproductive health to include wording about sexual rights. They also wanted a reference to the decisions of the 1994 Cairo UN population and development conference. The proposals were opposed by Egypt, the Holy See and the United States and were omitted from the draft resolution which is still to be voted on. Mr Pat Buckley, director of European Life Network of Ireland, who is at the meeting, said: "Pro-life organisations must watch carefully to see that apparently innocuous wording about otherwise neutral matters such as health does not carry a meaning which could advance the agenda of the abortion promoters. Happily, some countries are working hard to defend vulnerable human life at this conference. It is tragic, though, that our own European Union, funded by the British and Irish taxpayer, should so often be on the wrong side in these debates." Pro-life groups are also monitoring draft resolutions about violence against women and sex education, about which the Holy See has concerns. The time for voting on a resolution on sexual orientation has passed but the issue could appear again as other resolutions are drafted. All major countries are represented at the session. Some of the national representatives are diplomats while others are health specialists. Lobbying organisations are not allowed to take part in debates but pro-life groups are helping sympathetic governments by monitoring discussions and sharing information. The session was to have finished next week but may be extended into the following week (commencing 19 April).