Monday, 19 October 2009

Urge MEPs to oppose coercive and sex selective abortion

Our colleagues at CARE for Europe have sent us the information below, which we have adapted for your use. Please read it and follow the directions. Please remember to copy any replies you receive to

Amendments to oppose coercive abortion and sex-selective abortion, to be voted on this Thursday (22 October)

As in previous years CARE For Europe, along with other non-governmental organisations (NGOs), is campaigning for specific wording to be included in the European Commission's annual budget for overseas development, to prevent any funds going to organisations or countries which are complicit in promoting family planning programmes which include an element of compulsion (eg. coercive abortion and involuntary sterilisation). This amendment was actually passed in 2007 and included in the 2008 budget. The pro-abortion lobby are, however, now saying this amendment should be opposed, because they say it is an attack on the so-called right to abortion. This is not the case. All that is being called for is that there should be no element of compulsion in these matters. Such compulsion is an abuse of human rights and makes women have something done to them that they have not freely chosen. (Please see the end of this message for the full text of the amendment.)

Another amendment supported by CARE for Europe and similar NGOs is against sex-selective abortion (Again, please see the end of this message for the amendment's full text.)

These amendments will be voted this Thursday 22 October during the European Parliament's plenary session in Strasbourg. Please write to your MEPs to ask them to support these worthy amendments. To find out who your MEPs are and how to contact them, please visit and pick your region. For an easy way to email all your MEPs, please visit To find out more about the issues, please read Care for Europe's briefing on the SPUC website

Full text of the amendment against coercive abortion: "Stresses that Community assistance should not be given to any authority, organization or programme which supports or participates in the management of an action which involves such human rights abuses as coercive abortion, involuntary sterilization or infanticide, especially where such actions apply their priorities though psychological, social, economic or legal pressure, thus finally implementing the specific Cairo ICPD prohibition on coercion or compulsion in sexual and reproductive health matters; calls on the Commission to present a report on the implementation of the EU's external assistance covering this programme."

Full text of the amendment against sex-selective abortion: "Projects funded by this budget title must not pursue gender-based eugenic discrimination, which is increasingly common in certain countries, or any other form of discrimination against girls (at any point after conception) and such projects must commit adequate resources to overcome the subsequent asymmetries for children conceived as a result of mass rape, including appropriate provision for their mothers [cf Opinion on "A Special Place for Children in EU External Action", § 9 and 13, EP committee for women's rights and gender equality, amendment tabled by Ana Maria Gomes (S-D, Portugal)]"

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