Thursday 10 June 2010

Nicaragua resolutely withstands Human Rights Council pressure to legalise abortion

The UN Human Rights Council yesterday turned its fire on Nicaragua - piling on the pressure to legalize the killing of the unborn in a wide range circumstances. Pat Buckley, leading SPUC's lobby at the Human Rights Council in Geneva, reports:
"No less than eleven countries were pressurising Nicaragua to repeal its pro-life legislation: the Netherlands, Norway, the Czech Republic, Mexico, the UK, Belgium, France, Finland, Sweden and Slovenia.

"This was done during the Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review (UPR) procedure, a unique process which involves a review of the human rights records of all 192 UN Member States once every four years."
Pat tells me that the recommendations varied but typical of them was Finland's recommendation that Nicaragua should: “revise legislation regarding the sexual and reproductive rights of women, including the abolition of the total ban on abortion, and ensure their access to services necessary for their enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health” and Mexico's that Nicaragua should “follow through on recommendations of different treaty bodies regarding the possibility of considering exceptions to the general prohibition of abortion, especially in cases of therapeutic abortion and pregnancies resulting from rape and incest”.

I don't know if any of the Mexican delegation were Catholics. If so, I hope they will shortly receive advice from the Archbishop of Guadalajara, Cardinal Juan Sandoval Iniguez who says that those who promote and approve laws in favor of abortion are outside the Catholic Church and should not receive Communion. The Mexican action brings shame on a nation where, the evidence suggests, the people and the Catholic Church leadership are strongly pro-life.

Pat Buckley reminds us:
"It's far from the first time that a United Nations body has targeted Nicaragua's pro-life legislation. But, as on previous occasions, Nicaragua fought back resolutely. Carlos Robelo, Nicaragua's representative, strongly rejected the recommendations and told the Human Rights Council council that that Nicaragua would not change back its abortion laws to allow 'therapeutic' abortion.
Carlos Robelo, on behalf of Nicaragua, was in fact representing humanity's consensus on the right to life. Those who oppose abortion and other anti-life practices are seeking to uphold solemn international human rights agreements. They are seeking to uphold, for example, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which celebrated last December its 60th anniversary on which I spoke in Spain last year at the 4th pro-life world congress in Saragossa.

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