The Trump administration announced plans Monday to stop funding the United Nations agency that has been caught promoting forced and coerced abortions and sterilizations in China.
For many years, links have been exposed between the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and China’s one-child policy. China’s oppressive population control policy, recently changed to a two-child limit, has led to forced and coerced abortions up through nine months of pregnancy, as well as forced and coerced sterilizations.
On Monday, the U.S. State Department sent a letter to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee announcing its plans to stop funding UNFPA because of its support of forced and coerced abortions and sterilizations in China, according to the BBC.
“This determination was made based on the fact that China’s family planning policies still involve the use of coercive abortion and involuntary sterilization, and UNFPA partners on family planning activities with the Chinese government agency responsible for these coercive policies,” the state department said.
The cut amounts to at least $32.5 million for the 2017; the department said it will redirect the funds to the U.S. Agency for International Development, which provides medical care to families across the world, the Associated Press reports.
UNFPA denies its involvement in forced and coerced abortions and sterilizations in China. In a statement, the UN agency said it “promotes the human rights of individuals and couples to make their own decisions, free of coercion or discrimination.”
In 2015, the United States was the fourth-largest donor to UNFPA, a voluntarily-funded agency, according to the BBC.
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Previous pro-life presidents also cut off funding to the UN agency during their administrations, while pro-abortion presidents, including Barack Obama, restored the funding.
The move comes after President Donald Trump reinstated the Mexico City Policy in January. The policy prohibits taxpayer funding of groups that promote or provide elective abortions overseas.
At the time, Trump also set up plans to begin defunding UNFPA by directing the Secretary of State to implement a plan that expands the policy across all global health assistance funding. This means that taxpayer dollars will not support organizations that promote or participate in the management of a coercive abortion program — like China’s.
The United Nations Population Fund has a long history of supporting China’s population control regime. Pro-life, human rights groups and others have been calling for investigations of UNFPA’s activities in China for years.
Reggie Littlejohn, president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, a human rights group that works to end forced and coerced abortions and sterilizations in China had this to say Saturday, prior to the defunding announcement.
“UNFPA has been found to be complicit with coercive population control in China in the past, and I have no doubt that any unbiased investigation would find them complicit again. I have long advocated for the defunding of UNFPA.”
Littlejohn said she also would like to see a new investigation of UNFPA’s work in China. She referred to a 2002 investigation by then-Secretary of State Colin Powell that found UNFPA was complicit with Chinese officials in coercive methods of family planning.
“I believe that any independent, unbiased investigation into UNFPA’s activities in China will lead to the inescapable conclusion that they are complicit with China’s population control practices, which include forced abortion and involuntary sterilization,” she continued. “To the extent that the global community is funding the UNFPA, the blood of Chinese women and babies is on our hands.”
Many believe forced and coerced abortions and sterilizations continue under China’s new two-child policy.
U.S. Congressman Chris Smith wrote about the abuses earlier this year:
In October of last year the BBC released a report entitled “China’s Forbidden Babies Still An Issue” confirming that under the “Two-Child Policy,” forced abortion remains a threat for women pregnant with a third child.
BBC’s Beijing Correspondent John Sudworth interviewed the father of a family in hiding because his wife has just given birth to their third child. The father told Sudworth, “A third baby is not allowed. If we weren’t in hiding, they would have forced us to have an abortion.”
China’s Family Planning officials readily admit to Sudworth that all women of childbearing age are still required to report for up to two ultrasound examinations every year.
They freely discuss with Sudworth the massive “social compensation” fines levied on families that have a third child—up to ten times the annual average income.
They also admit that that any woman found to be pregnant with a third baby will receive “home visits” with the aim of “persuading” them to have abortions.
Said one official ominously: “If you’re reported to us, then we’ll find you and we’ll persuade you not to give birth to that baby.” Another said more bluntly, “We’ll definitely find you and persuade you to do an abortion.”