Parliamentary Network E-News

Volume 13
No. 6
August, 2019
 
International Pressure for Abortion
Pro-abortion Rally Cry: "Push Back"
Pro-abortion NGOs, along with pro-abortion activists serving in key positions, have been following a 'battle cry' to "push back" against what they describe as 'regression' in support and funding for abortion. The main source for their ire is the Trump administration's pro-life belief in the sanctity of life from the moment of conception and its commitment to advancing life-affirming policies through its foreign aid and at the United Nations (UN).
 
The effectiveness of U.S. opposition to the use of abortion inclusive terms at the UN and fear over potential pro-abortion failure to have abortion included under Universal Health Coverage is described in the pro-abortion document Universal Health Coverage: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights on the Agenda:
 
"Today, sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) are under threat. In recent years, negotiations in the UN and other global forums have been extremely difficult. The US and the states and blocs that currently ally with it are promoting hard-line positions on SRHR and seeking to contest agreed human rights and SDG language on sexual and reproductive health...In light of the growing opposition to SRHR there is a real risk that SRHR is excluded from global frameworks and new commitments on UHC, including from the political declaration of the HLM on UHC in September."
 
Any confusion over whether or not "SRHR" includes abortion, at least in the view of the pro-abortion lobby, is put to rest by the explanation that "SRHR as defined by the Guttmacher - Lancet commission in Accelerate progress-sexual and reproductive health and rights for all: report of the Guttmacher-Lancet Commission 2018".
 
The report by this official UN sanctioned commission states, "Reproductive health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, in all matters relating to the reproductive system and to its functions and processes." This definition includes "access to safe abortion services, including post-abortion care".
 
It also states that "essential sexual and reproductive health services" should include "safe and effective abortion services and care".
 
Even UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres joined in the "push back" chorus during comments to a High-level General Assembly meeting marking the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) stating"We are seeing a global pushback on women's rights, including reproductive rights and vital health services."
 
Notably, the ICPD Programme of Action did not establish a right to abortion and recognized the sovereign right of nations and legislators to determine their own policy on abortion in Section 8.25:
 
In no case should abortion be promoted as a method of family planning...Any measures or changes related to abortion within the health system can only be determined at the national or local level according to the national legislative process.
 
The 25th anniversary meeting of ICPD takes place during November in Nairobi where a major pro-abortion "push back" is expected to take place.

 

UK Votes to Impose Abortion upon Northern Ireland
Both chambers of the United Kingdom (UK) Parliament voted to impose abortion on demand for the first 28 weeks of pregnancy on Northern Ireland through the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Act 2019, Section 9, Abortion etc: implementation of CEDAW recommendations. The Act received Royal Assent and will be implemented beginning March 2020 if the Stormont Parliament is not functioning by October 21, 2019 so it can decide for itself on any changes to abortion policy.
 
Currently, the political parties in Northern Ireland have not been able to come to agreement and form a power-sharing government that is provided for under the 1998 "devolution' agreement with the UK Parliament. Devolution allows the Assembly and Executive Committee to make laws and decisions affecting Northern Ireland. The pro-abortion amendments take advantage of the political stalemate to impose a policy that the Northern Ireland MPs would very likely reject.
 
The Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Act 2019 calls on Northern Ireland to repeal Sections 58 and 59 of the Offences Against The Person Act, effectively legalizing abortion throughout all nine months of pregnancy under select situationsand allowing abortion on demand for the first 28 weeks (7 months) of pregnancy as well as implement the recommendations issued by the treaty monitoring body for the Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) to the 2018 review of the UK's report under article 8 of the Optional Protocol.
 
Countries are not obligated to accept the recommendations from CEDAW and other treaty bodies as these entities are increasingly influenced by pro-abortion activists serving as "experts" and by pro-abortion organizations. This is demonstrated by the CEDAW report to the UK which begins with repeating the claims of three pro-abortion organizations-The Family Planning Association, Northern Ireland Women's European Platform and Alliance for Choice-referenced in footnote #1. It states:On 9 December 2010, the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women received information from several organizations (1)...The sources allege that the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has committed grave and systematic violations of rights under the Convention owing to the restrictive access to abortion for women and girls in Northern Ireland.
 
Political leaders in Northern Ireland rejected the vote by the UK Parliament with pro-life DUP leader Arlene Foster saying"The clause on abortion, which of course is probably the most insidious of all, because I do not believe there's any support at-all to go to a situation where you would have abortion up to 28 weeks. There is no way that would pass through the assembly in Northern Ireland....So therefore there is a need to deal with that matter and to get a distinctive Northern Irish voice to deal with what the people here want in relation to their abortion laws."
 
Baroness O'Loan, a former police ombudsman, co-signed a letter to then PM Theresa May with the Church of Ireland Archbishop Lord Eames that expressed the concerns of manyabout the pro-abortion amendments. The letter included the following:
 
"The imposition of this legislation on Northern Ireland in its current form, voted for only by MPs who do not represent constituencies in Northern Ireland, would represent a massive democratic deficit," the letter said.
 
The manner in which there has been an attempt to change abortion law in Northern Ireland this week treats the people of Northern Ireland with contempt.
 
It has the capacity to undermine the delicate political calibration between Northern Ireland and Westminster and to cause significant damage to attempts to restore the Northern Ireland Assembly."
 
Pro-life groups in Northern Ireland and the UK are actively working to raise awareness of the extreme pro-abortion policy that will be imposed if no government is formed and are calling on political parties to come together and form a government by the October 21 deadline. Right to Life UK has prepared a factsheet, 20 shocking facts about Northern Ireland's new extreme abortion regime and Precious Life Northern Ireland is initiated a Fight-Back Campaign and is preparing a legal challenge.
 
Precious Life's Founder and Director, Bernadette Smyth, stated: "We will not stand idly by and see a breach of the devolution settlement...The suggested recommendations in the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) report are very wide ranging and at odds with the democratically expressed wishes of people here and decision making by our local politicians and Judiciary."
 
She continued, "As recently as February 2016 the Stormont Assembly voted against changing the law here. Our concern is that the CEDAW recommendations shall be unlawful and unnecessary. The Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Act 2019 states that the Regulations should be in place by March 2020. In the meantime, Precious Life will prepare a legal case against the introduction of a radical abortion regime in Northern Ireland."
 
Mrs. Smyth concluded, "We have a very short window of time to defeat this undemocratic and deadly law. The right to life is granted neither by judges nor politicians, but it is their duty to protect it. Recent court rulings have stated that any change to our legislation in Northern Ireland regarding abortion is a matter for the Stormont Assembly. We are urging the pro-life majority of NI to bombard their MLAs calling for them to ensure the government is reconvened by October 21st to stop the slaughter of our unborn children."
 
Read more here
Kenya: Abortion Plan Advanced by High Court
Kenya's High Court, established by the new constitution, issued a ruling that advances the strategy of global pro-abortion elites to broaden access to abortion in Kenya-a goal they have been after since the new constitution was enacted in 2010. The Court ruled in favor of a case brought by the Center for Reproductive Rights, Ipas, and the Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) on behalf of the mother of a 14 year-old rape victim who died following an abortion. The Court issued two rulings. First, it ruled that rape is a legal exception for abortion provided under Article 26(4) of the Constitution. Justice Aggrey Muchelule explained the broad interpretation of health used by the Court, "Pregnancy resulting from rape or defilement, if in the opinion of a trained medical profession poses a danger to life or the health - that is physical, mental and social well-being of the mother - may be terminated under ... sections of the constitution."
 
Second, the Court found that the 2013 decision by the Director of Medical Services and the Ministry of Health to withdraw the 2012 Standards and Guidelines for Reducing Morbidity and Mortality from Unsafe Abortion in Kenya and the National Training Curriculum for the Management of Unintended, Risky and Unplanned Pregnancies-guides written with assistance from Ipas- "violated the rights of women and adolescent girls of reproductive age to the highest attainable standard of health. The Court further found that the unjustifiable limitation amounted to the violation of the right of women and girls to non-discrimination, as well as the right to information, consumer rights, and right to benefit from scientific progress." The Ministry of Health withdrew the Standards and Guidelines and stopped the abortion training program out of concern that they provided/enabled access to abortion beyond the constitutional limits.
 
Ipas had previously acknowledged that it was involved in passage of the Kenyan constitution reporteding in 2010, "Ipas acknowledges its role in securing passage of a new constitution" and stated "By adding a 'health' indication for abortion, the language in the constitution allows for greatly expanded access to safe [abortion] services." During the 2010 campaign for the constitution pro-life advocates, including religious leaders, were accused of lying when they correctly stated that the new constitution with the broad health definition would open the door to abortion on demand. 
 
Ipas also stated that it worked with Ministry of Health officials to "ensure that the new language is implemented, despite efforts by the anti-choice movement to have it removed." 
 
The Kenya Christian Professionals Forum and the Catholic Doctors Association filed briefs as interested parties which included seeking to define that "trained health professional" meant a "qualified medical doctor" but the Court decided that "the term was not borne out by the constitutional and statutory provisions, or by the reality on the ground" opening the way to abortion by non-physicians.

The African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, a treaty monitoring body of the African Union, welcomed the judgment of the High Court through its Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Women in Africa, the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information in Africa, and the country rapporteur for Kenya. It noted that the judgment was "in line with the Campaign for the Decriminalization of Abortion in Africa, which was launched by the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Women in Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 18 January 2016."

Its statement continued, "Furthermore, this decision is in line with Article 14 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (the Maputo Protocol) which guarantees women's right to health, including sexual and reproductive health, and specifically Article 14(2)(c)which requires State Parties to 'protect the reproductive rights of women by authorizing medical abortion in cases of sexual assault, rape, incest, and where the continued pregnancy endangers the mental and physical health of the mother, or the life of the mother, or the foetus'."
 
The Commission urged that all State Parties "ensure that women and girls can access comprehensive and accurate sexual and reproductive health information in order to exercise their right to the highest attainable standard of health" and called on Kenya to lift its reservation to the abortion article of the Maputo Protocol "to ensure that women may have full exercise of the constitutional protection established in Article 26(4) of the Constitution and affirmed by the High Court last week."
In response to the High Court's ruling the Center for Reproductive Rights called for renewed training in abortion methods stating"We ask the Ministry of Health to immediately reinstate training of all nurses, clinical officers, midwives and doctors on provision of safe and legal abortion services in accordance with the Constitution; and also to avail in all facilities trained health professionals, essential medicines and equipment for safe and legal abortion in accordance with the Constitution."
 
During last summer's Abortion & Reproductive Justice: The Unfinished Revolution conference in South Africa, funded by George Soros' Open Society to pursue the overturning of laws against abortion around the world, pro-abortion elites lamented that the strategy for Kenya had not yet resulted in greater access to abortion and may have "gone backwards". Activists also discussed the use of the Maputo Protocol as the means to advance abortion in Africa claiming that "few people actually know what exactly is in the Maputo Protocol" and that "perhaps it would be best to urge governments to implement it without specifying the details, but focus instead on what we think is best to promote."
 
Read more here
Pro-Abortion "Blueprint" Includes Legalizing Self-Induced Abortion
Pro-abortion NGOs and key supporters in the United States (US) and in the European Union (EU) have compiled their wish lists of extreme policies on abortion. In the US, a coalition of 80 organizations including PPFA, Center for Reproductive Rights, ACLU, Ipas, and Catholics for Choice are looking to the 2020 elections and hoping that Democrats will win control of the White House and Congress in order to advance their Blueprint for Sexual and Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice in order to "correct the backtracking that has taken place in recent years."
 
The document details the pro-abortion agenda for the future described as "a proactive policy agenda to advance sexual and reproductive health in the United States and around the world. The endorsing organizations are committed to a future where those in power will support, not restrict, our individual sexual and reproductive health and rights, a time when a fully supportive Congress and Administration will work together to enact policies the Blueprint lays out."
 
The Blueprint's wish list includes:
 
--Comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care services - including abortion - must be covered at no or low cost.
--Access to Abortion Care Domestically and Globally must be protected and expanded.
--Every individual must have unimpeded access to abortion care - regardless of where they live, how much money they have, their insurance, their age, or if they decide to self-manage their abortion.
 
Federal lawmakers are targeted and told they "...must enact policies that guarantee abortion access across the country. This includes passing legislation to ensure coverage for abortion in private and government-funded insurance plans and programs and ending the Hyde Amendment, which withholds abortion coverage (except in the limited cases of rape, incest, and life endangerment) from those qualified and enrolled in Medicaid, as well as related restrictions on abortion coverage."
 
The groups seek to eliminate all bans on U.S. funding of abortion in the US and globally and removal of conscience protection for health-care professionals while it seeks health plans that do "not include exemptions or accommodations based on religious or personal beliefs that impede access to care".
 
Incredulously, the Blueprint seeks to allow women to induce their own abortion stating: "Denounce the unjust and stigmatizing criminalization of abortion, including those who end their own pregnancies by choosing self managed abortion and send strong messages that however a person chooses to end a pregnancy, they must be able to do so safely and effectively without fear of arrest."
 
According to ReproAction:
"Self-managed abortion is a broad term that includes all methods a person may use to end their own pregnancy, including medication, herbs, and manual aspiration. While no person should ever be shamed for choosing self-managed abortion, some methods may be safer and more effective than others."
 
The groups also seek to limit judicial nominees stating in the Blueprint that the President must only consider and the Senate only confirm nominees who they believe have "a positive record" on abortion and who agrees with them that the Constitution protects the "right to have an abortion".
 
The NGOs also seek the same litmus test for executive nominees for the next administration.
EU: Pro-Abortion "Wish List"
Pro-abortion Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and pro-abortion NGOs in Europe have banded together post EU election to advance a radical agenda intended to influence not only EU countries but the world. The first target for their wish list is the newly elected president of the EU Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, who is asked "to protect and further strengthen gender equality and sexual and reproductive health and rights in the work programme for the European Commission 2019-2024, together with the pro-choice network ALL of US."
 
Included in the detailed request is to include the "promotion and improvement of sexual and reproductive health and rights in the next EU's Public Health Strategy."
 
Pro-life laws are targeted as the new president is asked to "Firmly denounce regressive discourse and prevent the enactment of laws and policies that undermine women's rights, gender equality, sexual and reproductive health and rights..."
 
Funding and a political prioritization is sought for "far-reaching initiatives to change harmful social norms through education and empowerment" in order "to defend women's rights" among the SRHR goals. Financial support is also sought for "women's rights groups and human rights defenders, particularly those working in challenging contexts, including in EU member states"; in other words the NGOs are seeking EU funding for their own work.
 
Newly elected MEPs are targeted with their own detailed "wish list" to "ensure women's rights, including sexual and reproductive rights, are safeguarded across the world".
 
They are asked to "ensure adequate budget for SRHR"; "hold the European Commission accountable, ensuring that the EU is standing by its commitments on SRHR; and "use their role to champion SRHR, through reports, resolutions and parliamentary questions, in their committee work and in plenary."
 
Included in the wish list MEPs are asked to ensure that within each EU annual budget "at least 20% of EU Official Development Assistance (ODA) is allocated to HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND SOCIAL INCLUSION, hence contributing to the promotion of SRHR globally".
 
Also they are told to make sure "the future EU'S RELATIONS WITH COUNTRIES FROM AFRICA, CARIBBEAN AND THE PACIFIC (ACP) includes strong provisions for the promotion of SRHR and women's and girls' rights" and to ask questions to "candidate Commissioners during the HEARINGS to ensure the new College of European Commissioners will uphold SRHR and gender equality during their mandate."
Poland: Pro-Abortion Pressure from Council of Europe and UN
The Council of Europe through a report by its Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatović, issued a warning to Poland targeting its pro-life laws. Poland only allows abortion for threat to the mother's life, fetal abnormality, or when pregnancy results from rape or incest. The Commissioner stated in the report, "Polish authorities should urgently adopt the necessary legislation to ensure the accessibility and availability of legal abortion services in practice." Laws to further restrict abortion were criticized, including one currently pending in Parliament, and she called upon the Polish national legislature "to reject this and any other legislative proposal that seeks to further erode women's sexual and reproductive rights."
 
The Commissioner called on Polish authorities "to consider making abortion legal on a woman's request in early pregnancy, and thereafter throughout pregnancy to protect women's health and lives and ensure freedom from ill-treatment." She also called the Polish law requiring a prescription for emergency contraception "an additional barrier for women in Poland" and called for it to be made available for over the counter sale.
 
The UN Human Rights Committee (HRC) during its review of Poland's report for the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights likewise was critical of its strong pro-life laws.
 
The HRC called on Poland to "urgently review the effects of the restrictive antiabortion law on women" and told it to "introduce regulations to prohibit the improper use and performance of the 'conscience clause' by the medical profession."
 
The UN treaty monitoring body for the Convention Against Torture also criticizedPoland for its laws against abortion and for its conscience protections. In response, a representative for Poland affirmed that the conscience clause was recently declared "admissible by the Constitutional Court" and that the Court "had also ruled that it was unconstitutional to expect doctors to inform patients of their right to invoke the law on family planning and to refer them to other health-care practitioners. The burden of responsibility had thus been transferred to the health-care entity in which the doctor practised."
 
Another representative for Poland explained that, "although it had a duty to protect conceived life, the Government's stance was that abortion was justified in exceptional cases. It would therefore continue to adhere to domestic legislation and respect the jurisdiction of the Constitutional Court on that matter."
Defending Life
US: New State Department Commission on Unalienable Rights
The State Department has created a new Commission on Unalienable Rights to focus on human rights from the perspective of America's founding. It comes in response to efforts by special interest groups and other nations to promote an agenda under the guise of "human rights," such as abortion. The goal of the commission is to ensure human rights policies are rooted in American ideals. "The Commission on Unalienable Rights will provide the secretary of state with advice on human rights grounded in our nation's founding principles and the principles of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights," said the State Department.
Russia: Orthodox Church Calls for Protection of the Unborn
The Russian Orthodox Church has called for a ban on all abortions and scientific research on human embryos. In a statement, the Church said "An embryo is a human being, who therefore has certain rights that should be protected." The statement calls for the unborn child's right to life to be protected from the moment of conception. The Church called on the government to protect doctors' conscience rights and criticized the use of prenatal genetic testing as 'unacceptable'. 
UK: Pro-Life MP Threatened after Vote Against Abortion
A Scottish lawmaker elected to serve in the UK House of Commons has faced threats and bullying, including from within her political party, the Scottish National Party (SNP), after her stand against the imposition of abortion on Northern Ireland. MP Dr Lisa Cameron, a psychologist, said: "The attacks on me have been nothing less than vitriolic. One individual threatened to come over and 'abort me'."
 
There is concern that she may be ousted from her position despite the fact that Dr Lisa Cameron voted against the bill as a matter of conscience, partly shaped by her own tragic experience of undergoing two very late-term miscarriages. She stated, "It was a free vote, a conscience vote. I didn't rebel or vote against the party whip. And yet now it's virtually certain that abusive party activists will make sure I'm deselected and lose the job I love."
 
Dr Cameron wrote to the Westminster whip for the SNP Patrick Grady stating, "If it is now incompatible to hold pro-life views and be an SNP MP, candidate, to pass vetting or be elected in any capacity to the SNP, then my position would invariably be untenable. I think it is a very poor day when tolerance only goes in one direction."
 
She went on, "I am being told by local officials that voting according to my conscience on a free vote means I have no place being elected in the SNP. I find this outrageous but I have to say it is also extremely sad for Scotland."
 
PNCI notes that in July, 2018 Dr Lisa Cameron was awarded the Cruelty Free International Parliamentarian of the Month award for her efforts to end animal testing of cosmetics. No one protested that work.
 
Focus on the United Nations
WHO Recommends Self-Managed Abortion in Illegal Settings
The World Health Organization (WHO), the UN body that oversees health, has issued a new set of guidelines which includes recommendations for self-managed/ self-induced abortion.
 
"WHO Consolidated Guideline on Self-Care Interventions for Health: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights" states: "Self-care for SRHR has perhaps the greatest potential to address unmet needs or demands in marginalized populations or in contexts of limited access to health care, including, for instance, self-managed medical abortion in countries where abortion is illegal or restricted."
 
The recommendations for self-induced abortion begin with a woman determining for herself if she is able to undergo an abortion induced by drugs: "Self-assessing eligibility [for medical abortion] is recommended in the context of rigorous research."
 
The next recommendation is for the actual abortion: "Managing the mifepristone and misoprostol medication without direct supervision of a health-care provider is recommended in specific circumstances."
 
This is followed by post-abortion self-evaluation: "Self-assessing completeness of the abortion process using pregnancy tests and checklists is recommended in specific circumstances."
 
WHO, while recommending self-induced abortion in illegal settings, includes the advice that this should only take place "where women have a source of accurate information and access to a health-care provider should they need or want it at any stage of the process."
 
WHO claims that "Self-management approaches reflect an active extension of health systems and health care" and includes this disclaimer: "These recommendations are NOT an endorsement of clandestine self-use by women without access to information or a trained health-care provider/health-care facility as a backup."
Philippines: Senators Rebuke Pro-Abortion Iceland
Senators in the Philippines slammed Iceland's abortion rate in a response to a UN Human Rights Council resolution criticizing the country's anti-drug campaign. The primary country backing the resolution, Iceland, called for concrete actions to be taken to investigate the initiative. In response, Senate President Vicente Sotto said Iceland has "no moral grounds to lecture the Philippines on human rights" and called on his country to disregard the UN resolution. "They have more unborn babies that they have aborted or killed. There are more killings in abortion than the drug pushers who are fighting the police," said Sotto.  Senator Imee Marcos similarly called for the Philippines to sever ties with Iceland. "How can these countries point a finger at the Philippines when many of them have legalized abortion and have ignored the right to life of unborn children?" asked Marcos.
Legislative News
AU: Victoria Legalizes Euthanasia
Euthanasia is now legal in Australia as a new law goes into effect in Victoria. Under the Assisted Dying Act, passed in 2017, a person over the age of 18 who is suffering from an advanced terminal illness may request assisted suicide. The government claims the law has safeguards to protect from misuse, and experts suggest Victoria's model will be a guide for other Australian states.
 
The Australian Medical Association (AMA) and religious groups such as the Catholic Church have strongly opposed the law. Dr. Chrys Pulle, president of the Australian New Zealand Society of Geriatric Medicine, warned this could end up "placing pressure on frail older people who may feel they're a burden on others". He warned of a coming "tsunami" of aging patients entering the health care system and the dangers associated if they felt that pressure. "As a society we should be judged on our support of a sick, vulnerable and frail elderly," said Dr. Pulle.
Gibraltar: New Abortion Law Faces Referendum
The government has announced a national referendum to legalize abortion next year. The parliament recently passed legislation to legalize abortion but said it will only implement it if it is also supported by the public. The Crimes (Amendment) Bill 2019 came to parliament following pressure on the government that its pro-life policies violated the constitution, largely based on a ruling by the UK Supreme Court that said Northern Ireland's pro-life laws violated the European Convention on Human Rights. The new law in Gibraltar legalizes abortion for the first trimester in cases where there is a risk to the mental or physical health or life of the mother and in cases of fetal anomaly. The law also states that "account may be taken of the pregnant woman's actual or reasonably foreseeable environment", which can be translated into abortion on demand. The referendum is currently scheduled for March 19, 2020. 
France: Senate Reverses Vote to Expand Abortion Limit
The French Senate has backtracked on legislation to extend the legal abortion limit. On June 7th, Senator Laurence Rossignol offered an amendment to extend the abortion limit from 12 to 14 weeks gestation. Rossignol argued that 3,000-5,000 women travel every year to other countries that have later abortion limits, the same claim that was used to extend France's abortion limit from 10 weeks to 12 weeks in 2001. The bill passed but, with only 22 Senators of the full 348 present. A second reading defeated the bill; however, opposition was based on the failure to follow proper debate procedure the first time. A new bill is expected this fall.
Executive News
US: NIH Issues New Requirements for Research Using Aborted Baby Tissue
The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued new guidelines limiting the use of human fetal tissue (HFT) from aborted babies for research. The new guidelines require grant applicants who plan to use HFT to give "a justification of the use of HFT, details regarding procurement and costs, and information about how the applicant/contract offeror will use HFT" in order for their application to be reviewed. They must also explain why they cannot use an alternative to HFT for their research. Submissions are then reviewed by an ethics advisory board composed of "scientists, bio-ethicists and others". This past June, the Trump administration ended a contract with the University of California that used HFT from aborted babies and now there are no publicly funded research programs using HFT through the Department of Health and Human Services.
US: Texas Enacts Law Protecting Babies Who Survive Abortion
Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed into law a bill requiring doctors to give life-saving care to infants who survive an abortion. House Bill 16 compels doctors to "exercise the same degree of professional skill, care, and diligence to preserve the life and health of the child as a reasonably diligent and conscientious physician would render to any other child born alive at the same gestational age" for a child born alive after an attempted abortion. Similar legislation in the House of Representatives, the Born Alive Survivors Protection Act, has been blocked for a vote by Democrats over 70 times.
New Zealand: Bill to Allow Abortion on Demand

The government of New Zealand announced that it will try to pass a law allowing abortion during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy, removing it from the 1960's Crimes Act. Beyond 20 weeks, abortion would require a doctor's approval. Under current law, abortion is allowed for physical or mental health, the woman must receive counseling, and the abortion must be approved by two doctors.

Justice Minister Andrew Little said that the bill is designed to "modernize our law and ensure that abortion is treated as a health issue". The bill also blocks pro-life protests within 500 feet of abortion clinics. Pro-life Voice for Life criticized the bill, calling it "truly shocking" and accused Ardern's government of "wish fulfillment for a tiny minority of very vocal abortion ideologues."
Prime Minister Ardern defended the bill and the 20-week limit explaining that three versions of the bill had been considered before a decision was taken saying, "I think this option has the greatest chance of succeeding in parliament." Her Labour party has 46 members of parliament, with nine MPs from the populist New Zealand First party and 55 MPs from the opposition National Party.
Guam: Governor Wants to Expand Abortion, Catholics Say No
Guam Governor Lou Leon Guerrero recently said she wants to expand access to abortion in the territory and is trying to recruit doctors to perform them. Guam's last abortionist retired in 2018. Catholics across Guam have stood up in opposition, calling for pro-life laws. "Human life begins at conception and the Roman Catholic Church affirms and promotes this truth. There is no other moral or logical place to draw the line," said a statement from The Archdiocese of Agaña.
 
The Catholic Pro-Life Committee organized a prayer rally inviting people to: "Say no to recruiting doctors who will kill our unborn children! Say yes to recruiting doctors who help us save lives." The governor has acknowledged it will be challenging to find pro-abortion doctors in the predominantly Catholic territory.
Judicial News
US: Oklahoma Court is First to Uphold Law Banning D&E Abortion
An Oklahoma county court is the first to uphold a state law banning the D&E abortion procedure in the second trimester. The case challenged a 2015 Oklahoma law that banned the use of abortions by dilation and evacuation (D&E) and been on hold since then. "It is unconscionable to think that we would allow this practice to continue. Judge Truong is to be commended for declaring this legislation constitutional," said Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter. "Today is a major victory for basic human decency in Oklahoma." The Center for Reproductive Rights is looking into all possible ways to keep the new law from going into effect.  
UK: Appeals Court Overturns Forced Abortion for Disabled Woman
A UK Appeals Court has overturned a decision that would force a disabled 22 week pregnant woman to undergo an abortion against her will. The initial decision by the Court of Protection at the Royal Courts of Justice ruled that due to the woman's "moderately severe" learning disorder, abortion is in her best interest. Madame Justice Nathalie Lieven in her ruling said the woman wanted the baby as she would a doll, and the post-abortion plan was to give her a doll after the abortion. The woman's mother appealed the decision, saying she would care for the baby and citing her daughter's wishes and feelings. The three appeals judges ruled with the mother.
 
pro-life rally "Stand With Her" celebrated the appeals court ruling while also raised concern at the risk of forced late-term abortions in the UK. "The atmosphere was one of joy that the woman and her child had been spared but also of horror that this could have happened," said Caroline Farrow, the Campaign Director for UK & Ireland at CitizenGO. Right to Life UK said it was "unlikely" this was a one-time case. . "Right To Life UK will be calling on the Department of Health to urgently reveal how many women have been forced by a hospital to have an abortion against their will in the UK, and make clear how they will ensure no women and family will ever have to go through this again," they said in a statement.

 
 
Parliamentary Network for Critical Issues
Advancing global respect and dignity for life through law and policy.

In this Issue

 
International Pressure for Abortion
Pro-abortion Rally Cry: "Push Back"
UK: Parliament Votes to Impose Abortion on NI
Kenya: Abortion Plan Advanced by High Court
US: Pro-Abortion "Blueprint" Includes Legalizing Self-Induced Abortion
EU: Pro-Abortion "Wish List"
Poland: Pro-Abortion Pressure from Council of Europe and UN
 
Defending Life
US: New State Department Commission on Unalienable Rights
Russia: Orthodox Church Calls for Protection of the Unborn
UK: Pro-Life MP Threatened after Vote Against Abortion
 
Focus on the United Nations
WHO Recommends Self-Managed Abortion in Illegal Settings                 
Philippines: Senators Rebuke Pro-Abortion Iceland
 
Focus on the African Union
African Commission Welcomes Increased Access to Abortion in Kenya
 
Legislative News
AU: Victoria Legalizes Euthanasia
Gibraltar: New Abortion Law Faces Referendum
France: Senate Reverses Vote to Expand Abortion Limit
 
Executive News
US: NIH Issues New Requirements for Research Using Aborted Baby Tissue
US: Texas Enacts Law Protecting Babies Who Survive Abortion
New Zealand: Bill to Allow Abortion on Demand
Guam: Governor Wants to Expand Abortion; Catholics Say No
 
Judicial News
US: Oklahoma Court is First to Uphold Law Banning D&E Abortion
UK: Appeals Court Overturns Forced Abortion for Disabled Woman

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www.PNCIUS.org has been updated with expanded information on Human Dignity and critical issues including: Abortion, Bioethics, Child Mortality, End of life issues, Infanticide, Maternal mortality and Sex-selective abortion.
 
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