by Steven Ertelt
September 10, 2006
Canberra, Australia (LifeNews.com) — Abortion advocates in Australia are pressuring the nation’s government to consider reversing a ban it has on spending taxpayer funds on abortions or promoting abortion in other nations. The current ban, similar to a law in the United States, has been in place for a decade.
Former senator Brian Harradine help put the ban in place but now members of the Australian parliament are attempting to overturn it.
Sharman Stone, an MP who chairs a panel on foreign policy issues, says the ban should be reversed because some women die from illegal abortions in countries where it is prohibited. Stone has asked Foreign Minister Alexander Downer to review the policy.
However, some pro-life nations have little or no advanced medicine which would prevents the deaths and women still die from abortions in industrialized countries despite abortion being legal.
The Minister for Health, Tony Abbott, has said he favors the policy and will lobby against efforts to change it but Stone bashed the pro-life funding policy as "an anachronism from a particular political past."
Money would pay for training doctors how to do abortions and also be used for non-aborton purposes such as combating maternal mortality and AIDS.
The battle to reverse the policy comes after abortion advocates won a victory to allow a government drug agency to have oversight on the dangerous RU 486 abortion drug, which has killed 12 people worldwide and seven in the United States.
Pro-life groups are also fighting efforts to reverse a ban on all forms of human cloning.