Despite some reports claiming China may relax or even do away with its brutal one-child policy, that results in forced abortions, coercive sterilizations and other human rights abuses, Chinese officials are renewing its commitment to it.
A top family planning official dashed hopes that the one-child policy will be abolished or modified slightly any time soon.
“We must unwaveringly adhere to the One Child Policy as a national policy to stabilize the low birth rate as the primary task,” stated Wang Xia, Chairman the National Population and Family Planning Commission, at a national conference on January 14. “We need to keep the One-child policy and keep the national birth rate low . . . It’s our priority.”
She said Chinese national media quoted expert opinions that “the current low birthrate is not stable, except for a few very advanced major cities.”
The Zhong Xin China News Agency report added that “In most areas of the nation, if they were to give up the One Child Policy, the current low birthrate would definitely rebound significantly. Therefore, in order to stabilize the low birthrate, it is necessary to hold on to the One Child Policy as a basic national policy.”
Wang’s announcement came amidst criticisms by demographer Gu Baochang and statistician Ma Jiantang, that the declines in the labor force due to the one-child policy are endangering China’s economic future. Ma Jiantang added that China should look into “an appropriate and scientific family planning policy,” a Reuters report said.
Littlejohn responded to the new comments, telling LifeNews, “Gu Baochang and Ma Jiantang join a growing chorus of critics of the One Child Policy. The fact that criticism is growing does not warrant jumping to the conclusion that the policy is at an end.”
“Such critics generally do not mention human rights abuses as the reason for reform. Nor do they advocate abolition of the policy, but rather gradual modification by transitioning to a two-child policy. Their concern is for the potentially devastating, long-term economic and demographic consequences of the policy,” Littlejohn added. “The central issue in the One Child Policy is not whether the government allows couples to have one or two children. Rather, it is the coercion with which this limit is enforced. Even with a two-child policy, women will still be subject to forced abortion if they get pregnant without a birth permit.”
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“Also, a two-child policy fails to discourage gendercide, the sex-selective abortion of baby girls. In areas where couples can have a second child if the first is a girl, gendercide is rampant,” she explained.
Littlejohn concluded, “Wang Xia’s strong pronouncement should end speculation that China will abandon the One Child Policy in the foreseeable future. Forced abortion up to the ninth month of pregnancy, and gendercide – the sex-selective abortion of baby girls – will continue until all coercive birth limits are abolished. We at Women’s Rights Without Frontiers are dismayed by this news, but will redouble our efforts to end this hideous crime against humanity.”