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The UN's questionable actions continue.

Pressure persists on Nicaragua to liberalize its abortion laws. Several UN officials argued against those laws before Nicaragua's supreme court earlier this year. In 2000, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) said it would halt aid to the country, since its family-planning programs contained what the agency called "discrepancies" (, June 28, 2007).

The World Bank and other institutions are promoting "reproductive health" (which includes abortion) as part of the UN's Millennium Development Goals--even though those goals make no mention of it. The bank is sponsoring a course that teaches participants how to initiate sector reforms in reproductive health, which it defines as including the right of individuals "to reproduce if and when they wish," as well as the right of access to "safe, effective, affordable and acceptable methods of regulating childbearing" (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, July 13, 2007).

At a meeting in New York, members of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women criticized Honduras over its pro-life laws, telling the country that a ban on abortions is "a crime." They also expressed concern over a Hungarian brochure entitled "Life Is a Miracle" and pressed Belize, Brazil, Kenya and Liechtenstein over their restrictive abortion laws. CEDAW members also pressed for homosexual and lesbian "rights." One member suggested the nuclear family is "judgemental" against other alleged forms of the family (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, August 2, 2007).

The UNFPA in August proposed a spread of "reproductive health services" throughout the world as part of a four-year, $224 million advocacy strategy for supporting and raising awareness of reproductive rights (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, August 10, 2007).

The UNFPA is working diligently with the International Planned Parenthood Federation at the African Union to deliver sexual and reproductive health "services," including abortion. The two agencies have co-operated in drafting and promoting a Continental Framework on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, as well as the Maputo Plan of Action, both of which aim to have these services provided by national health systems across Africa. Critics charge that trickery and deception are part of the effort (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, August 16 and 23, 2007).

A draft UN treaty on the rights of the disabled includes a provision for "sexual and reproductive health services." Despite objections from many nations, the committee chair--who has faced at least one accusation of bias--has abandoned the normal practice of consensus and insists the matter continue to be negotiated. He has also departed from convention by permitting non-governmental organizations to take part in the negotiations (Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, August 17, 2007).

The 2007 UN Grand Award for outstanding achievement in public relations has been given to an Indian campaign aimed at promoting "the consistent use of condoms as part of safe-sex practices and family planning." The campaign stressed that "condom" is not a delicate word and should be discussed freely (UN News Service, August 20, 2007).
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Title Annotation:United Nations
Publication:Catholic Insight
Date:Oct 1, 2007
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