Amnesty International upset pro-life advocates years ago by adopting a policy position supporting abortion. Now a local chapter of the international human rights group is making waves for banning a pro-life group from a human rights event.
The web site Campus Reform has more on what happened:
The University of Buffalo (UB) chapter of Amnesty International refused to allow a pro-life student organization to participate in an annual Human Rights Day Celebration on Tuesday citing the organization’s longstanding “pro-choice… stance.”
According to the emails President of the UB Amnesty International chapter Fara Khan replied, saying her organization could not allow a pro-life group to participate.
“In regards to having Students for Life table, I am sorry to disappoint, but without hashing out our personal beliefs, I hope that you will familiarize yourself with Amnesty International’s stance on sexual and reproductive rights,” she said.
“ I think you will find that your organization’s and Amnesty’s schools of thought are quite opposite on this issue (I’ve attached a link with more info).”
Enclosed in the email was a link to the Amnesty International’s website where the organization states its explicit support for pro-choice policies.
Khan did not respond to Campus Reform’s requests for comment on the club’s decision.
Christian Andzel, the president of UB Students for Life said his club’s request had nothing to do with the divisive issue of abortion and that they instead wanted draw attention to political prisoners around the world, which is another issue represented by Students for Life.
“This event had nothing to do with the debate on abortion,” said Andzel. “The UB Students for Life merely wanted to work with Amnesty International on an issue of mutual agreement.”
Amnesty International, a human rights organization that used to be abortion neutral, is now using the problem of maternal mortality to advocate for abortion. In a new report, ostensibly on medical care for maternal health, Amnesty calls on governments to repeal abortion laws and conscience protection for medical workers who may object. They also call for public health systems to train and equip health care providers to perform abortions.
Amnesty’s “Maternal Health is a Human Right” campaign focuses attention on four countries: Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Peru, and the United States. Amnesty argues that maternal mortality will decrease if it is treated as a human rights issue, if costs to health care are covered by governments, and if a right for women to control their reproductive and sex lives is established.
The United States’ maternal mortality ratio is only 21 deaths per 100,000 live births compared to Burkina Faso’s 300 and Sierra Leone’s 890 deaths per 100,000 births.
The Amnesty’s report that in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, and Peru, that women face death because of inadequate medical conditions and corruption. But then the report goes further arguing that abortion is needed, too.
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Elsewhere Amnesty has called for small steps towards the legalization of abortion. The group submitted a report to the UN Committee on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) calling for the legalization of abortion in Mexico for women who are pregnant as a result of rape or incest.
According to its official position, “Amnesty International believes that where women’s access to safe and legal abortion services and information is restricted, their fundamental human rights may be at grave risk.”
In 2010, Amnesty International was found pressuring the national of Peru in South America to legalize it.