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Apr 28, 2011

UN Ignores 3 Million Annual Stillbirths; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

NEW YORK, April 28 (C-FAM) Nearly three million children die every year during labor and delivery or in the weeks just before birth, more than all deaths by HIV/AIDS. The UN does not even count them. A new study says abortion politics is one reason why. “In an era of global efforts for maternal health, a woman’s own aspiration of a live baby is missing from the world’s health agenda,” say the authors of a study in the prestigious medical journal Lancet . About 98% of the 2.6 million yearly stillbirths occur in low- and middle-income countries, mostly due to complications during delivery. One in every 300 babies is stillborn in high-income countries, owing to a rise in obesity, smoking, and delayed childbearing. Unlike maternal and child deaths, the rate of stillbirths has not declined appreciably in decades. Read More .

US Asylum Ruling Belittles China’s Brutal One-Child Policy; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, April 28 (C-FAM) A US appeals court ruled that a Chinese man whose wife underwent a forced abortion and IUD insertion is not eligible to asylum, despite US law to the contrary. Even though the court recognized the couple’s clear desire to have additional children, it reasoned that with only one child currently, the couple was not in violation of China’s one-child policy, and any future threat of persecution was “too speculative”. The decision was issued last week by the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. The ruling not only helps to establish a precedent that a married couple should not be kept together in asylum cases, but also downplays the draconian breadth and severity of the Chinese family planning system and one-child policy. Read More .

Apr 21, 2011

Development Conference Document Ignores the Desires of Nations; By C-FAM Staff

NEW YORK, April 20 (C-FAM) Delegates hurried into the large UN conference room just before three o’clock last Friday afternoon. They had debated every night all week and until past two that morning without agreement. Now they had just twenty minutes to decide whether to accept not their own version of the document but one put together instead by the facilitator of the meeting. ome looked visibly upset as they flipped through the pages and rushed to confer with other delegates. Many controversial phrases which governments had objected to remained in the document. For instance, though a clear majority of the negotiating countries spoke out all week against “reproductive rights,” it still appeared on the first page of the “facilitator’s text”. For the third year in a row, the UN Commission on Population and Development had to resort to such last minute procedural maneuvering in order to avoid ending without an agreed outcome document. Read More .

Costa Rica Threatened for Protection of Embryonic Rights; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D. Tyler Ament

WASHINGTON, April 20 (C-FAM) Costa Rica must legalize in vitro fertilization according to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, or face penalties for alleged violations of human rights protected by international law. In 2000, the Costa Rican Constitutional Court ruled that IVF in the country was unconstitutional because it violated the right to life of the embryo. Four years later, the Center for Reproductive Rights petitioned the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to accept a case claiming that the human rights of two Costa Rican couples were violated by the ban. Read More .

Apr 14, 2011

US Castigates Holy See over Family Planning; By Lauren Funk

NEW YORK, April 14 (C-FAM) The contrast between the priorities of the developed and developing world was as clear as night and day. “It is detrimental to not have adequate family planning resources,” a visibly US delegate told the room. “Why is there a resistance to acknowledging access to family planning as a necessity?” The soft-spoken delegate from the small island nation of St. Lucia replied, “How do we get our fertility rate to rise? We were told we needed to reduce our fertility rate –now we have an aging population.” Both voices spoke out during a UN panel hosted last week by the Holy See, Honduras, and Malta called “Secure Human Development: Marriage, Family, Community.” Laurie Shestack-Phipps, a US representative to the UN, castigated the Holy See and other organizers for not being “comprehensive” in their approach to the panel, specifically mentioning family planning and abortion. She complained further about high fertility rates in the poor countries of Africa. Read More .

US Accused of Falsely Stating Vatican Position to Win Votes for Resolution; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, March 23 (C-FAM) The US Department of State is telling Latin American delegations to the United Nations that the Vatican has changed its position on a sexual orientation declaration that was just released at the Human Rights Council in Geneva, according to diplomatic sources in New York. According to these sources, an official in Western Hemisphere Affairs at the US State Department has held a series of meetings with Latin American delegations telling them the Vatican now supports the declaration calling for “sexual orientation and gender identity” to be new categories of non-discrimination in international law. However, a high ranking source at the Holy See says these assertions are false and that the Holy See opposes the declaration being considered in Geneva. Read More .

Dec 30, 2010

Countries Reject “Sexual Orientation” Language in Treaty with Europe; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

BRUSSELS, December 30 (C-FAM) Developing nations recently slapped down attempts by the European Union to add “sexual orientation” to an existing treaty. Seventy-nine countries from Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific islands sent a letter to the European Parliament that is notable for its strong demand that the EU stop pushing its homosexual agenda on developing countries. The treaty in question is an economic development pact between the developing countries --- acting as the African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States (ACP) --- and the European Union that allows for the sides to revise the agreement every five years. Earlier this year, during treaty revision negotiations, the EU tried to insert language on “sexual orientation” as a category of non-discrimination. This was repeatedly rejected by the developing nations and was struck from the final version of the revised agreement. Read More .

Supporters Say Truly Comprehensive Sex-Ed Gets Results ; By Samantha Singson Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, December 30 (C-FAM) Nothing gets the debate burning hotter at the UN than one over sex education for children. Last Fall conservative UN delegations angrily protested a report claiming for children a new right to “comprehensive sexuality education.” At another meeting last year, when the Holy See promoted abstinence-based programs, liberal delegations met the proposal with sneers and laughter. Read More .

Dec 23, 011

US Forces Vote on “Sexual Orientation” in General Assembly; Lauren Funk and Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, December 23 (C-FAM) The United States made good on its promise to force a vote on “sexual orientation” in the General Assembly this week angering many delegations from the global south. With support from the European Union, the Nordic countries and Canada, the US launched a massive campaign to re-insert “sexual orientation” into a UN resolution before final approval in the General Assembly. Reportedly, the US was working “at the highest levels” to push countries to support its amendment. he US move followed in the wake of a vote in a lower level committee last month, when opponents of the “sexual orientation” language won their bid to have the language removed. The deletion of that term caught its supporters off-guard because “sexual orientation” had been included in the resolution on “Summary, Arbitrary, or Extrajudicial Executions” for the past 10 years. Read More .

High Court Says No Right to Abortion in European Law ; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

STRASBOURG, December 23 (C-FAM) Europe’s highest human rights court says there is no human right to abortion in Europe’s human rights convention, and that abortion laws are the purview of sovereign states. The European Court of Human Rights made the statement last week in its conclusion of “A, B, and C v. Ireland.” Three anonymous plaintiffs claimed that Ireland’s strict abortion laws violated their human rights to privacy under the European Convention on Human Rights. The women claimed that they had traveled to Britain for abortions with the belief that they could not secure abortions in Ireland given their circumstances. Read More .

Dec 17, 2010

US Re-Opens Resolution to Push for “Sexual Orientation”; By Lauren Funk and Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, December 17, 2010 (C-FAM) The United States celebrated Human Rights Day by declaring its intention to re-insert “sexual orientation” into a General Assembly resolution even after a majority of countries voted against it a few weeks ago. Though it is rare for the General Assembly to reopen a resolution once it is passed at the committee level, at a UN panel last week, US Ambassador Susan Rice said, “We’re not done yet.” She encouraged nations to stand with the US in fighting to restore the reference to sexual orientation adding, “We intend to win this fight.” Read More .

Group Says Discrimination Against Christians on the Rise in Europe; By Tyler Ament

VIENNA, December 17, 2010 (C-FAM) The murder of a Catholic bishop in Turkey, 100,000 Euro fines, and exclusion from public office are just a few of the acts of discrimination and intolerance against Christians in Europe. A Viennese group just published a report, which cites dozens of cases of intolerance and discrimination against Christians, and makes various corrective recommendations to European governments and the European Union. Read More .

Dec 9, 2010

UN and IPPF Sponsor Campaign to Decriminalize Willful HIV Infection; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D. and Tyler Ament

NEW YORK, December 9 (C-FAM) A new campaign seeks to eliminate disclosure laws which require HIV positive individuals to inform their sex partners of their potentially deadly infection.

The campaign is led by the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and UNAIDS, an umbrella group of UN agencies. Notably absent from this campaign is any recognition of the danger posed for the possible victims of a willful refusal to disclose HIV status.

As part of the campaign, IPPF released a collection of interviews entitled “Behind Bars” , which implies that such criminal laws fuel stigma against HIV persons. Proponents of criminal laws assert they are designed to help protect and prevent sexual partners from contracting a potentially deadly virus. Read More .

Homosexual Activists Launch New Guide to Make Homosexual “Rights” A Reality; By Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, December 9 (C-FAM) Homosexual activists just launched a new "toolkit" which outlines methods to promote a controversial document which asserts that states have a legal obligation to fulfill “rights” to gay adoption, reproductive technologies and state-funded sex changes.

Drafted in 2007 by a select group of human rights “experts,” including UN special rapporteurs and UN treaty body members, the non-binding Yogyakarta Principles propose reinterpretions of long-established human rights to include special rights for homosexuals.

The Principles in effect downgrade traditional rights such as freedom of expression and religion stating where they conflict with “the rights of freedoms of persons of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities.” Read More .

Dec 2, 2010

Pope Leads Worldwide Prayer Vigil for Unborn Life; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

ROME, December 2 (C-FAM) Last Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI led an unprecedented global prayer vigil for unborn life in Rome that was repeated in countries around the world. Ten thousand faithful jammed St. Peter’s Basilica including many children who were presented to the Holy Father. In his remarks , the pope offered support to those working in the pro-life movement. “I wish to express my thanks to all who have taken up this invitation and those who are specifically dedicated to welcoming and safeguarding human life in different situations of fragility, especially in its early days and in its early stages,” he said. “The Church continually reiterates what was declared by the Second Vatican Council against abortion and all violations of unborn life: from the moment of its conception life must be guarded with the greatest care,” said Pope Benedict. Read More .

Dithering Over UN Youth Conference; By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, December 2 (C-FAM) If present dithering is any indication, the promised global conference celebrating the UN International Year of Youth may not happen after all. As it stands now, governments at the UN cannot decide on a date, sponsor, funding, or venue. However, some fear that a hasty youth conference will be thrown together at the last minute, given the example set by the World Youth Conference in Mexico this past August. Last spring the UN announced a conference for youth in July 2011 to cap off the International Year of Youth. As talks over the practical aspects of the conference began, Tunisia came forward as a potential sponsor and began to organize the event. Read More .

Nov 25, 2010

CEDAW Senate Hearing; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D. and Tyler Ament

WASHINGTON, November 25 (C-FAM) Last Thursday, a Senate subcommittee humored feminist activists by holding a hearing on possible U.S. ratification of a controversial women’s treaty. Senator Dick Durbin was the only senator present, save for a brief cameo by one other, which led one observer to remark that the hearing was nothing more than a “dog and pony show.” Despite longstanding and widespread opposition in the U.S. to the thirty year-old treaty, the hearing was decidedly one-sided, as five of the six speakers spoke in favor of ratification. The hearing was held to promote the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). The CEDAW treaty was signed by President Jimmy Carter but has never been ratified by the U.S., and has not even been voted on by the full Senate, which would require a two-thirds majority for ratification. Read More .

UN Partners With NGOs to Push Abortion in Africa; By Samantha Singson and Nicholas Dunn

ACCRA, GHANA, November 25 (C-FAM) Earlier this month, a UN office partnered with abortion heavyweights to push for widespread legal abortion at a conference in Ghana, Africa. Conference participants insisted that access to “safe and legal abortion” is central to reducing maternal mortality, and attacked organized religion and restrictive laws as being obstacles to preventing maternal deaths. Aissatou Gaye of the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) delivered the keynote address . Gaye stressed that “restrictive policies” and laws were major contributors to unsafe abortion, since most unsafe abortions occur where abortion is illegal. Read More .

Nov 18, 2010

UN Lobbyist Splits $600,000 Pro-Life Prize; By Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, November 18 (C-FAM) Delegates have again locked themselves in a UN conference room to negotiate reproductive health language. Outside, Jeanne Head, a retired labor and delivery nurse, pores over UN documents. It’s late and cleaning crews have begun their shift around the building. But the delegates and Jeanne are just settling in for a long night. It’s a familiar scene to UN delegates. They know Head well and that they'll find her nearby for advice on a provision or just some background. She is a resource delegates can and frequently do turn to. Though she calls herself a "reluctant activist," Head's hard work and effectiveness earned prominent recognition Tuesday. The Gerard Health Foundation awarded her a Life Prize , given to "individuals or organizations that have achieved significant progress in promoting the sanctity of human life and are working to protect and preserve it." Read More .

Internationalist Curriculum Infiltrates U.S. Schools; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

NEW YORK, November 18 (C-FAM) A sign nailed to a tree trunk in a family’s front yard reads, “NO IB, Stop Wasting Money, Keep the UN Out of Our Schools.” Across the Arizona town, a school board member criticizes a curriculum she says surrenders local control to a foreign organization that promotes world government. The debate means one American community has awakened to the International Baccalaureate, a study program quietly embraced by nearly 1,000 U.S. campuses and 139 countries worldwide. While found mostly in public high schools, the curriculum has touched middle and elementary schools, and even a number of Catholic schools. “IB is the biggest educational scam perpetrated on American schools today,” says Lisa McLoughlin, a Long Island mother and leading critic. She says schools shouldn't spend tax dollars on the program, and questions if Catholic schools are aware of its underlying, liberal internationalist philosophy. Read More .

Nov 11, 2010

United States Under Pressure on Human Rights; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

GENEVA, November 11 (C-FAM) A UN panel last week lambasted US human rights policy, as an enormous American delegation traveled here to endure the dressing down. The 35 US delegates bore the fury of a periodic review in which UN member states scrutinize a country's human rights record. The process resulted in no fewer than 228 recommendations for US policy, with many urging the country to ratify a host of controversial treaties and declarations. Others asked the United States to withdraw reservations to treaties the US has ratified. The US delegation pledged that it remained “strongly committed” to ratifying the CEDAW women’s treaty and a disabilities treaty. The delegation pointed out, though, that ratification required two-thirds approval of the US Senate. Read More .

Planned Parenthood Says Sex Guide For Youth is a Best Seller; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

Warning: The following article contains graphic and disturbing content inappropriate for children

NEW YORK, November 11 (C-FAM) The world’s leading abortion provider continues to promote a graphic brochure advocating casual sex among youth. According to International Planned Parenthood Federation , the brochure called “Healthy, Happy and Hot” has become their most popular publication. Aimed at young people with HIV, the brochure contains sexually explicit language and promotes casual sex with multiple partners, as well as oral, anal, and homosexual sex. “Some people like to have aggressive sex,” says the brochure. “There is no right or wrong way to have sex.” It encourages young people who might have sex after drinking or using drugs to “plan ahead by bringing condoms.” Another section suggests readers visit family planning clinics for help in preventing or aborting unplanned pregnancies. Read More .

Nov 4, 2010

UN Agency Promotes Sex Ed From Birth; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, November 4 (C-FAM) Promoting sex education to the youngest of the young has drawn harsh criticism to a UN agency and its interpretation of age-appropriate education. “It is never too early to start talking to children about sexual matters,” according to guidelines issued by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. Once highly respected for its independence and integrity, UNESCO now works in partnership with the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the US (SIECUS), an educational arm of the controversial Kinsey Institute. Last September, a torrent of criticism greeted new UNESCO guidelines on sexuality education for promoting legal abortion and masturbation for children as young as five. The intensity of the objections forced the agency to pull the guidelines, only to quietly reissue new ones in December. Read More .

UN Super-Lobbyist Works Behind the Scenes to Pressure Governments ; By Samantha Singson

During a short recess, delegates rise to stretch their legs and chat with colleagues. The break comes after many hours grappling with a packed agenda in a windowless room at UN headquarters. But even now not everyone is relaxing. A striking woman with long curly dark hair still works poring over a document with two delegates from Africa. She is a familiar face at the United Nations. Salma Hamid represents the UN Population Fund, the UN agency critics accuse of pushing a right to abortion and even facilitating the Chinese one-child policy. Hamid often sits in on official negotiations typically restricted to government delegates, even though Hamid is not a delegate and UNFPA not a UN delegation. Hamid knows all of the delegates and they all know her. She used to be one of them, one of the few former delegates now shaping policy through UN agencies. When she was a delegate for Saudi Arabia, Hamid actually worked to promote pro-life and pro-family policies. As the population fund's representative, Hamid pushes sexual and reproductive health. A number of delegates greet her with smiles and hugs as she makes her way about the conference room, but others know to be wary. Read More .

Oct 28, 2010

Countries Slam Attempts to Create New “Right” to Sexual Education at UN; By Samantha Singson

New York, October 28 (C-FAM) - Angry delegates took to the UN floor this week to denounce a report that promotes a new human right to explicit sexual education for young children. The African and Caribbean blocs led the widespread hostility toward the report by registering their “strong rejection” and “strong disapproval.” The report claims a new human right to sexual education citing non-binding recommendations and other UN reports including the controversial UNESCO guidelines on sexual education and the Yogyakarta Principles . The report's author, Victor Muñoz, argues that States have an obligation to ensure this new right “from the early stages of life.” Read More .

A Global Movement On The Rise ; By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, October 28 (C-FAM) The authors penned their declaration a year ago not knowing it would spur an international movement. Now, nearly a half million backers have signed the Manhattan Declaration , a “call of Christian conscience” originally spurred by concern that U.S. leaders had lost sight of the meaning of religious freedom. In the months since, the declaration has not only reaffirmed Christian values, but has spawned similar movements on two other continents and an unprecedented display of ecumenical unity. It was President Obama’s description of religious freedom as a “right to worship” privately as opposed to freedom of religion that particularly worried the authors, says Robert George, one of three men who formed the declaration’s drafting committee. The three agreed that religious freedom should include a robust right to witness to their Christian faith in public, and set about drafting a declaration that reaffirms the Christian understanding of life, religious liberty, and marriage. Read More .

Oct 21, 2010

Heavyweight Philosophers Clash at Abortion Conference; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

PRINCETON, October 21 (C-FAM) A baby's cry, piercing the air from the back of an Ivy League academic hall, offered a disquieting counterpoint to a startling argument for abortion rights. “An infant has no moral status because he is not self-aware,” said Peter Singer, a professor of bioethics. Singer argued this point at an historic conference he co-organized at Princeton University last weekend, seeking new dialogue on the heated issue of abortion. Remarkably, for a conference examining abortion, there was virtually no discussion about the act of abortion itself. “We have to get rid of the idea of evil,” said Frances Kissling, an abortion rights advocate turned bioethics scholar, who also organized the conference. Read More.

C-FAM and ADF Submit Joint Brief to UN Committee; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

GENEVA, October 21 (C-FAM) A joint brief submitted this week criticizes a UN committee's abuse of authority amid a back-door push for international abortion rights. C-FAM and the Alliance Defense Fund together outlined why they oppose the committee's move to endorse a right to sexual and reproductive health. They acted in anticipation of a meeting called by the committee, one of many that oversee specific UN treaties, scheduled for next month in Geneva. The committee, which monitors the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, scheduled the discussion as it prepares to endorse the right to sexual and reproductive health. This week's petition makes two arguments. It contends the committee has no authority to suggest the treaty includes a right to sexual and reproductive health because the treaty does not mention the phrase. Second, assuming for the sake of argument that the treaty contained the language, the right to sexual and reproductive health does not include abortion. Read More.

Oct 14, 2010

Historic Turnaround in Europe Preserves Conscience Rights; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

STRASBOURG, October 14 (C-FAM) A dramatic legislative reversal reaffirmed the conscience rights of medical professionals and institutions in Europe last week. The Council of Europe’s legislature considered a resolution calling for onerous restrictions on conscientious objection, including stripping protections for doctors who object to performing abortions. Led by two politicians from Italy and Ireland, a coalition of legislators secured the passage of 29 amendments that transformed the resolution into one that upheld universally recognized rights to freedom of conscience. The original resolution, known as the McCafferty report , sought to punish medical professionals for refusing to perform procedures against their conscience. It even called for a new registry of conscientious objectors. Read More .

Catholics Protest Pending Population Control Legislation in Philippines; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

MANILA, October 14 (C-FAM) Protests loom in the Philippines as Catholic leaders and lay groups monitor bills that would enact national population control measures. Two measures pending in the Philippines promote “reproductive health.” They mandate dispensing artificial birth control, including potential abortifacients. Both bills contain substantially similar language. The bills require the state to guarantee universal access to reproductive health care services, methods, devices, and supplies -- not only for adults but also for adolescents and children. Both bills promote “modern” methods of family planning, including birth control pills, intra-uterine devices (IUDs), injectables, and condoms. Read More .

Oct 7, 2010

A Champion For Maternal Health; By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, October 7 (C-FAM) One night in Nigeria, a sick pregnant woman stumbled into a clinic, on the verge of death. A young English doctor on his first medical trip to Africa rushed to help her. Robert Walley started an IV while another doctor grabbed a stethoscope to listen for the baby’s heartbeat. The woman died just as Walley was setting up the IV. He was holding her hand. Without any equipment to perform an emergency C-section, both doctors watched for five frustrating minutes until the baby’s movement stopped. The deceased woman’s husband was distraught, and Walley felt distressed knowing that the outcome would have been different in a well-equipped English hospital. His colleague, a weathered professional with years of experience working in the hardships of Africa, broke down and cried. Read More

Amnesty Demands Abortion Decriminalization in Latin America; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

NEW YORK, October 7, 2010 (C-FAM) A leading human rights group last week stepped up its promotion of abortion, targeting Latin America and particularly Nicaragua. Amnesty International demanded that governments decriminalize abortion immediately in a statement released to coincide with the Sept. 28 “Day for the Decriminalization of Abortion in Latin America and the Caribbean.” Amnesty specifically targeted Chile, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, saying it is “disgraceful” these countries have laws criminalizing abortion in all circumstances. Read More

Sep 16, 2010

Abortion Groups Praise Newly Named Head of UN Women’s Agency; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. Co-authored by Nicholas Dunn

NEW YORK, September 16 (C-FAM) The appointment of former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet as Under Secretary General of UN Women has garnered praise from several abortion advocacy groups. The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, commonly known as UN Women, was established on July 2nd when the General Assembly unanimously approved a resolution that consolidated four UN bodies on women’s issues. The creation of this super-agency for women’s issues is largely attributed to the lobbying efforts of the Global Campaign for Gender Equality Architecture Reform (GEAR), a coalition of abortion proponents. Not only was the GEAR campaign instrumental in founding UN Women, the organization reportedly had a heavy hand in the selection process of the new under secretary general, providing the secretary general a list of questions for candidate interviews. More

United Nations Considers International Tax to Support MDG’s; By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, September 16 (C-FAM) Sixty nations will present a declaration to implement an international currency transaction tax during the UN Millennium Development Goal (MDG) summit that begins next week at United Nations headquarters in New York. As members of the Leading Group on Innovative Financing for Development, these nations will propose a tax they contend is necessary to bridge alleged funding gaps for the MDGs. Estimates judge the gap in development financing to fall between $324-336 billion a year from 2012 to 2017. Since its inception in 2006, the Leading Group has promoted what it calls “innovative development financing” that seeks to redistribute wealth on a global scale. The Leading Group’s Taskforce on International Financial Transactions Declaration of last December states, “In order to support the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and other internationally agreed development objectives, development financing must be improved through innovative mechanisms to ensure stable, predictable flows that are complementary to traditional assistance.” More

Sep 9, 2010

Young People Launch Pro-Life/Pro-Family “Statement to the UN and the World”; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, September 9 (C-FAM) This week the International Youth Coalition launched its Statement of Youth to the UN and the World , a petition that will be presented to the UN (United Nations) General Assembly this Fall. Consisting of eight fundamental principles, the Statement was drafted by an international team of youth, and was first presented at a press conference at the World Youth Conference in León, Mexico. The Statement comes as a response to the “blueprint” for the United Nations International Year of Youth, the World Programme of Action for Youth (WPAY). This program, which was adopted back in 1995 by the General Assembly without a debate or vote, contains numerous references to sexual and reproductive health “rights” and calls for a radical autonomy for youth. More .

Executive Director Ends Tenure at Pro-Abortion UN Population Fund; By Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, September 9 (C-FAM) Last week, Thoraya Obaid delivered her last speech as executive director to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Board of Directors. Ending a ten-year term at the helm of the controversial United Nations (UN) agency, Obaid took the opportunity to highlight some of her “greatest achievements,” including her relentless promotion of the “reproductive rights” agenda. Obaid said she was “proud of the progress that we have made to secure a solid policy and legal foundation for sexual and reproductive health.” According to Obaid, “Today the concept of reproductive health is widely accepted and reflected in international, regional and national policies and plans.” More .

Sep 2, 2010

Sex Toys on Display at the World Youth Conference; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

LEÓN, MEXICO, September 2 (C-FAM) Last week at the World Youth Conference, organized primarily by the Mexican government and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the main event for most of estimated 5000 “participants” was the Interactive Global Forum, a massive expo with hundreds of booths and exhibits. A tour of the booths revealed what passes for “age-appropriate” sexual education in some UN circles. Because the venue for the World Youth Conference had considerably more exhibit space than most UN conferences, it was a unique opportunity for organizations focusing on youth to put their best face forward. In the expo hall, there were dozens of booths with pornographic or sexually explicit materials or presentations. Read More .

World Youth Conference Ends In Controversy And Chaos; By Samantha Singson

EÓN, MEXICO, September 2 (C-FAM) The World Youth Conference (WYC) closed in León, Mexico last week with frustrated and confused delegates adopting what is being called the Declaration of Guanajuato, which will be presented to the UN (United Nations) General Assembly later this month. Delegates became increasingly frustrated as they were shut out of the negotiating process. Unlike at the United Nations where meetings are open to any delegation wishing to make amendments, at the WYC delegates were told that meetings were closed and that they should submit written amendments to the "drafting committee," comprised of a handful of countries. Read More .

Aug 26, 2010

Chaos and Ideology Reign at UN Conference on Youth in Mexico; By Samantha Singson Austin Ruse Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

LEÓN, MEXICO, August 26 (C-FAM) Early reports from participants at the World Youth Conference that commenced this week in León, Mexico are that the conference is the scene of ideological rigidity and yet almost total chaos. There seem to be four conferences going on at once, one for youth, one for governments, one for parliamentarians, and one called the Global Interactive Forum. A measure of the chaos at the governmental forum is that early yesterday it was announced the president of Mexico would appear and speak. The room gathered, quieted, music played, and then nothing happened and no one explained anything. The president never appeared, at least as of this writing. Read More .

UN Bureaucracy Campaigns for Homosexual Adoption in Mexico; By Amanda Pawloski and Co-authored by Dianelle Martinez

NEW YORK, August 26 (C-FAM) In the midst of a controversial judicial consideration of homosexual adoption earlier this month, the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights ran an ad campaign that appeared to support the effort to overturn Mexico City’s law against homosexual adoption. According the website of the Office of High Commission, an estimated 5 million people a day carried subway tickets with the message, “Embrace diversity; End discrimination.” The purpose of the campaign was to remind citizens of Mexico City that they “are entitled to the full range of human rights.” Read More .

Aug 19, 2010

UNFPA Uses International Year of Youth to Exploit Children; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, August 19 (C-FAM) Last Thursday, the United Nations (UN) officially launched the “International Year of Youth” (IYY) in the UN General Assembly Hall. The theme for the year is “Dialogue and Mutual Understanding,” with a focus on health and development, particularly the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). But some observers fear that the IYY agenda has been taken over by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) and its allies who are using it to promote new “rights” to sexual and reproductive health education and services for young people.

The UN has devoted considerable resources for the IYY, including for a new cutting-edge website , and has incorporated the youth agenda into the work of all of the major UN agencies. At the UN launch, the Joint Statement of the Heads of UN Entities was delivered by the head of UNFPA, Thoraya Obaid. Read More .

Human Rights Watch Incorrectly Charges Argentina with Treaty Violations over Abortion ; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

NEW YORK, August 19 (C-FAM) A report released last week by the human rights advocacy group Human Rights Watch promotes abortion in Argentina and criticizes Argentina for not complying with international law. The report, “ Illusions of Care: Lack of Accountability for Reproductive Rights in Argentina ,” charges that “[i]n Argentina, nationalistic interests combined with an orthodox Catholic discourse on ‘family values’ have historically underpinned some of the most anti-contraception and pro-population-growth policies in the region.” Read More .

August 12, 2010

Barack Obama’s Image in Kenya Tarnished by Abortion Battle; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

NEW YORK, August 12 (C-FAM) Barack Obama ’s sterling image among Kenyans has dimmed in the wake of a $23M U.S. campaign to promote a draft constitution that included abortion rights. The U.S. promoted the new constitution as a way to stop gross presidential power and corruption. Opponents say that same power and corruption were used to convince many Kenyans, falsely, that the document was pro-life. The constitution passed with 67% in favor on August 4th.
“In a word, we were against a most formidable government machinery that took total control of the message and denied access to the truth to its own people with the help of foreign regimes,” one Kenyan observer told the Friday Fax. Read More .

Organ of Organization of American States Used to Promote Abortion in Latin America; By Seana Cranston, J.D.

NEW YORK, August 12 (C-FAM) A recently-released document, revives concerns that the Washington DC-based Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is becoming yet another venue for the promotion of abortion, under the guise of “reproductive health,” and “family planning.”
The release of “ Access to Maternal Health Services from a Human Rights Perspective ” coincides with the “new international human right” to maternal health recently asserted by abortion activists at the UN-backed Women Deliver 2 conference which took place in Washington DC in June of this year. Read More .

August 5, 2010

African Union Submits to Pressure for Abortion as Cure for Maternal Deaths; By Samantha Singson

KAMPALA, UGANDA, August 5 (C-FAM) The African Union (AU) finished its annual summit last week with governments agreeing to make maternal and child mortality a continent-wide priority. The summit ended with Member States extending the controversial, non-binding Maputo Plan of Action (PoA) for an additional five years and expanding new initiative called the Campaign on Accelerated Reduction on Maternal Mortality in Africa (CARMMA). Pressure was placed on the AU from UN agencies and foreign non-governmental organizations (NGO). While United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) executive director Thoraya Obaid, called on delegates to focus on non-controversial interventions to reduce maternal deaths – such as skilled birth attendants and emergency obstetric care – the very next day in a speech at Makerere University in Kampala Obaid focused instead on "unsafe abortion," "reproductive rights," "reproductive health services" and "sexuality education." Read More.

UK Announces Plan to Push Radical Sex Agenda on Developing Nations; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. and Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, August 5 (C-FAM) Last week the United Kingdom (UK) announced a new maternal health initiative with an "unprecedented focus on family planning" for the developing world. The plan includes the promotion of abortion and sexual “rights” for children. The UK's Department for International Development (DFID) chief, Andrew Mitchell, presented the plan called “ Choice for Women – Wanted Pregnancies, Safe Births ” at a public consultation forum hosted by DFID and attended by development experts, health professionals, and the general public. Read More .

July 29, 2010

UN Committee Attacks Motherhood, Demands New “Rights” for Women; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, July 29 (C-FAM) A United Nations (UN) treaty committee notorious for its promotion of abortion and ideological positions not supported by UN treaties, concludes its session this week after launching attacks on motherhood and traditional gender roles, while calling for an ever-expanded array of new sexual and reproductive “rights.” The session was especially notable for the statement by the Russian Federation, which reported that decreasing abortion rates were helping to decrease the overall maternal mortality rates in that country. Read More .

Latin American Economic Summit Promotes Abortion, Condemns “Lesbophobia”; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. and Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, July 29 (C-FAM) A recent gathering of Latin America’s top economic commission issued a document praising secularism, condemning "lesbophobia," calling for redistributive social systems, and liberally promoting sexual and reproductive rights. Delegates from more than 30 Latin American and Caribbean countries attended the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean’s (ECLAC) Eleventh Session of the Regional Conference on Women in Brazil. The purpose of the conference was to address gender equality and women’s empowerment in economic terms. The delegates were mainly “gender” advisors, representing the government of member states. Read More .

July 22, 2010

US Rams Through UN Approval of Homosexual Group that Opposes Religious Freedom; By Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, July 22 (C-FAM) The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) voted this week on a US-led initiative to accredit the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC). The move effectively bypassed a subsidiary committee’s decision to defer action on the group until it answered questions about its support of new homosexual ‘rights,’ which many Member States believe directly conflict with recognized rights to freedom of religion and freedom of expression. The Obama administration has been an active champion of IGLHRC's application to the UN since the June meeting of the committee on non-governmental organizations (NGOs) when US representatives insisted on an immediate vote on IGLHRC even though other committee members still had unanswered questions. In response to the US attempt to force a decision, Egypt called for a procedural "no action" motion. Read More .

Nuncio to Iraq Appointed as New Head of Holy See Mission to UN ; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, July 22 (C-FAM) Late last week, Pope Benedict XVI named Archbishop Francis Assisi Chullikatt as the new permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations (UN) in New York, succeeding Archbishop Celestino Migliore, who was recently appointed papal nuncio to Poland. Archbishop Chullikatt has extensive experience as a member of the Holy See diplomatic corps, having served most recently in one of the most challenging posts, apostolic nuncio to war torn Iraq and also Jordan, a position he has held since 2006. Born in Bolghatty, India in 1953, he is the first non-Italian to head the Holy See Mission in New York. Read More.

July 15, 2010

Calls for Radical Autonomy for Youth Ahead of Mexico Conference; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK, July 15 (C-FAM) Two recently released documents prepared in anticipation of an upcoming youth conference make unprecedented claims for new “rights” for youth that experts say directly conflict with traditional norms and international law. The draft declaration which will be considered by governmental participants at the World Youth Conference, to be held at the end of August in Leon, Mexico, calls for a “comprehensive development of young people that includes: a humanist education to face ethical challenges” and “sexuality education.” There is also a call to “guarantee the highest level of physical and mental health of the youth population taking into account diverse … gender contexts,” and for providing “universal access to reproductive health, including through family planning as a method of reducing maternal mortality in adolescent girls and young women.” Read More .

UN Secretary General Announce New " Superhero " Advocacy Team for MDGs; By Samantha Singson

NEW YORK, July 15 (C-FAM) For months, the international community has been preparing for the September review summit on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). As part of the preparations, United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently announced the formation of an MDG advocacy team composed of prominent politicos and philanthropists who will "build political will and mobilize action on the eight Goals." The list, which includes noted population control supporters and abortion advocates, is causing concern. Read More .

July 8, 2010

U.S. Attacks Egypt Over Homosexual Rights at UN; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

NEW YORK, July 8 (C-FAM) At the United Nations (UN) last month, several U.S. representatives attacked Egypt for asking for further investigation into a homosexual advocacy organization which has applied for special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council. These attacks culminated in a sharp rebuke delivered last week by U.S. ambassador Susan Rice. The actions seem to contravene President Obama’s strategy of engaging Egypt and other Muslim societies in key foreign policy aims such as Middle East peace. Read More .

UN Creates What May Become a Billion Dollar Agency for Radical Feminism; By Samantha Singson and Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, July 8 (C-FAM) Last Friday the General Assembly voted to consolidate four separate United Nations (UN) bodies dedicated to women’s issues into one new gender equality entity called “UN Women.” The resolution capped a victory for radical feminists who lobbied for years for the new entity and is the latest in an overall push to bring women’s issues even more onto the UN agenda. After four years of sometimes harsh negotiations, member states agreed on simplifying the disjointed efforts of four UN offices dedicated to women’s issues; the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW), Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW) and the Office of the Special Advisor on Gender Issues and Advancement of Women (OSAGI). Read More.

June 24, 2010

UN Office of Human Rights Continues Drum Beat for New Human Right to Maternal Health; By Samantha Singson

GENEVA, June 24th (C-FAM) The Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) has presented a new report to the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council on "Preventable Maternal Mortality and Morbidity and Human Rights" that calls for a new “right” to maternal health. The pro-abortion Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) heralded the new report and boasted of having a "leading role" in getting maternal mortality put on the human rights agenda. CRR organized three panels on implanting a “human rights-based approach” to reducing maternal mortality at the recent Women Deliver 2 conference. Read more .

US Administration Launches All-Out International Homosexual “Rights” Offensive; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

WASHINGTON DC, June 24th (C-FAM) United States (US) Secretary of State Hillary Clinton addressed a reception at the State Department, proclaiming that “human rights are gay rights and gay rights are human rights, once and for all.” The reception celebrated “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month,” as was officially proclaimed by President Barack Obama for the month of June, and follows a recent incident at the United Nations (UN) where U.S. representatives made loud demands for immediate action on accrediting a homosexual “rights” group to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Read more .

June 17, 2010

Abortion Activists Claim New “Right” to Maternal Health ; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. ; co-authored by Catherine Glenn Foster

(WASHINGTON DC – C-FAM) At the United Nations (UN)-backed Women Deliver conference in Washington DC last week, abortion activists announced the achievement of a new international human right to maternal health just three years after launching a campaign to establish it. Advocates said that the new right requires nations to liberalize abortion laws and create numerous new bureaucracies, procedures and programs.

In a paper entitled, “Preventing Maternal Mortality and Ensuring Safe Pregnancy," the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) asserted, “[W]omen’s rights to life, health, and non-discrimination entitle them” to maternal health and that “governments must ensure women’s access to high-quality, appropriate reproductive health care, abolish discriminatory laws and social practices … and allow women to make autonomous decisions regarding their reproductive lives.” Read more .

IPPF Leads Push for Abortion Rights as UN Prepares for High-Level MDG Review ; By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) launched a new campaign this week called "A Promise is A Promise," demanding that states implement policies and programs to achieve the controversial Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target 5b on "universal access to reproductive health by 2015." Read more .

June 10, 2010

Women Deliver 2 Fails to Deliver, Ends With A Whimper; By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) Three thousand abortion advocates packed into the Washington, DC Convention Center this week for the Women Deliver 2 conference, a meeting aimed at increasing funding and government accountability for maternal mortality reduction strategies, including access to "safe abortion." While organizers closed the conference amid applause and cheers from a half-empty auditorium, outcomes fell far short of the ambitious funding goals set by organizers in the months leading up to the conference. Read More

UN Leadership in Disarray as Scientific Dispute Shatters Consensus on Maternal Health ; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) Deep divisions with top United Nations (UN) officials and abortion activists on one side and maternal health researchers on the other became public this week during the Women Deliver 2 conference in Washington DC. The dispute threatens to derail hopes of raising $30B for family planning at international development conferences in the coming months. These include the Group of Eight summit this month and the UN High Level Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Review in September. Read More

June 3, 2010

Researchers Asked to Hide Scientific Debate over Maternal Deaths; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.; Co-authored by Catherine Foster

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) At a meeting on maternal and child health research in Washington last week, United Nations (UN) staff and abortion advocates told scientists they should “harmonize” their findings or discuss them “in a locked room” so that the press could not report maternal death numbers that conflicted with the ones they use to lobby policy makers and major international donors. Read More

IPPF Report Calls for Youth Sex Rights and Reveals New UN Funding; By Samantha Singson and Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The abortion giant, the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), has just released its latest financial statement . The report boasts of increased spending on youth programs and a significant increase in funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), with an overall 20% boost in income as compared to 2008. Read More

May 27, 2010

UN Takes Aim at Youth with Conferences in Mexico City and Tunisia; By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The United Nations (UN) is now preparing to kick off the International Year of Youth. The Government of Mexico will host a world conference on youth in August that will produce a ministerial declaration on youth and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Conference organizers hope that the document will influence the high-level review on the Millennium Development Goals that takes place in September at the UN General Assembly. Read More

Human Rights Activists Call for a Super-Treaty Monitoring Body at UN; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) A new law review article by Professor Michael O’Flaherty, rapporteur of the Yogyakarta Principles , calls for the melding of all UN human rights treaty-monitoring bodies into something like a single entity. He calls for the adoption of this reform without the required consent of the Member States that are parties to those treaties. Read More

May 20, 2010

Portugal Legalizes Homosexual Marriage, Visiting Pope Condemns It; By Samantha Singson Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

(NEW YORK - C-FAM) This week, the president of Portugal announced his decision to ratify a law allowing gay marriage in the small European country. The same-sex marriage bill first passed in the Portuguese parliament in January, but was subject to a presidential veto. The president's decision to sign the bill into law makes Portugal the sixth European country allowing same-sex couples to wed.

The ratification by President Anibal Cavaco Silva, described as a practicing Catholic, comes just days after a papal visit to the predominantly Catholic country where Pope Benedict spoke out against the legislation. Read More

Gender-bending Yogyakarta Principles Brought to Council of Europe; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.; Co-authored by Emanuele Rizzardi

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) Two recent initiatives out of the Council of Europe (CoE) on sexual orientation and gender identity are seen as the first major step to codify the radical Yogyakarta Principles into the framework of international institutions.

The Yogyakarta Principles (Principles) is a 2007 document adopted by a group of human rights “experts” including several United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteurs and members of UN treaty monitoring bodies. The Principles list human rights that already exist in binding international law, and reinterprets each one to include homosexual “rights.” Read More

May 6, 2010

UNFPA and Abortion Advocates to Push "Reproductive Rights" on UN Treaty Bodies; by Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) This week, abortion advocates the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and Amnesty International (AI) are teaming up with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to host the "first-ever" briefings on "reproductive rights" for the committees responsible for monitoring compliance with the Convention Against Torture (CAT) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).

According to the CRR website , the briefing with the UN Committee against Torture (CAT) will focus on "reproductive rights violations" such "denial of reproductive healthcare services, including abortion and post-abortion care." Read More

G8 Battle Breaks Out Over International Abortion Funding; By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The campaign to insert abortion funding into maternal health initiatives has dominated the media coverage leading up to the 36th annual G8 Summit, which will be held in Huntsville, Canada in late June. The host government, Canada, has come under considerable criticism from the United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), pro-abortion NGOs and the Canadian media for refusing to bring abortion into the debate. Read More

April 29, 2010

New US House Bill Would Overturn Last Meaningful Restrictions on International Abortion Funding; by Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

NEW YORK – C-FAM) Last Friday, a Congresswoman from Brooklyn, New York introduced a bill in the United States (US) House of Representatives that would greatly expand international funding for abortion, contraception, and sex education, and would effectively eliminate the long-standing Helms Amendment prohibiting the use of US foreign assistance funds for abortion.

The Global Sexual and Reproductive Health Act of 2010, sponsored by Representative Yvette Clarke and co-sponsored by at least 17 other House members, appears to be linked to the US statement at the recently concluded United Nations (UN) Commission on Population and Development (CPD). That statement touted that “President Obama has requested $715.7 million for bilateral and multilateral reproductive health, including family planning, in 2011. If approved later this year by Congress, this amount will represent the single largest U.S. contribution in history for international reproductive health programs.” Read More .

New Push to Extend Controversial Maputo Plan of Action in Africa; By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) Last week, the African Union (AU) held a continental conference on maternal and child health in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to discuss the possibility of extending the non-binding Maputo Plan of Action on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (Maputo PoA), which was scheduled to expire this year. Read More .

April 22, 2010

Last Minute Backroom Negotiations Leave Witnesses Baffled at UN Commission on Population and Development; By Samantha Singson Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

(NEW YORK – C –FAM) Observers were left scratching their heads trying to figure out what went wrong in the final few hours of the United Nations (UN) Commission Population and Development (CPD), which ended last Friday at UN headquarters in New York. After three days of marathon negotiating sessions, the UN Commission on Population and Development came together in the final plenary to adopt an eight-page text on "Health, Morbidity, Mortality and Development." Despite reassurances from governments that controversial language regarding "sexuality education" and "reproductive rights" would not be included in the final document, in the final few hours of the conference, behind closed doors, the controversial language came back into the document. Read more .

Top Abortion Law Firm Says Government Funded Abortion is a Human Right; By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) A top abortion-rights law firm recently released its conclusion that the last decade of international legal trends indicate that abortion is not only an international human right, but that government funding is part of that right. They claim that the “vicious” health care debate in the United States over abortion funding shows that the U.S. is flouting international law. Read more .

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