China to Raise Stipend for Couples Who Follow One-Child, Forced Abortion Policy

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 15, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

China to Raise Stipend for Couples Who Follow One-Child, Forced Abortion Policy

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 15
, 2008

Beijing, China ( — The Chinese government will raise the annual payment for couples who abide by its one-child population control policy. However, the government said nothing about returning the jobs, income, land or houses of those who violated the coercive forced abortion law.

The official Communist Xinhua news agency reports that the annual payment will rise for rural couples who follow the population control program by having either one or, in cases where the first baby is a girl, two children.

The payment will increase from 600 yuan ($87) to 720 yuan ($105) and it is available to people above the age of 60 with either one child or two daughters.

Xinhua indicates 5.75 million people have received the stipend over the years at an estimated cost of nearly $5 million US.

Families may also receive a monthly stipend if their child is sick, handicapped or has passed away once the mother of the child reaches 49-years-old. Only 157,000 people have qualified for that, according to the National Population and Family Planning Commission.

The increase in the stipend is a way to get Chinese residents to increase their participation in the population control program, which had drawn significant criticism from pro-life groups and the Bush administration for human rights abuses.

Families have lost their homes and jobs, been subjected to home detention or imprisonment, thrown into forced labor programs or mental hospitals or have become victims of forced abortions or sterilizations for violating the policy.

In March, some mainstream media outlets wrongly reported that China had scrapped its forced abortion policy.

Anthony Ozimic, the political secretary for the British-based Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, told shortly after the initial news stories that he doubted their veracity.

"Western media outlets are disseminating misinformation by the Chinese Communist regime allegedly implying that China might scrap or significantly relax its one-child, forced-abortion population control policy," he said.

He blamed Reuters and the London Guardian for reporting the decision was a certainty, even though "nothing in the minister’s comments suggests such a move."

Ozimic told he thinks the whole incident was nothing more than Chinese officials trying to obfuscate the truth about the country’s human rights record in advance of the 2008 Summer Olympics.

"Experts know that the Chinese Communist regime makes misleading statements about human rights when the international spotlight is on China," he said. "Such statements are intended for Western consumption only and specifically designed to mislead Westerners into wishful thinking that the regime’s crimes against humanity, such as the one-child policy, are coming to an end."

The public relations campaign came after considerable human rights abuses such as a mass campaign of forced abortions and sterilizations in Linyi, China that involved more than 10,000 women.

Attorney Chen Guangcheng exposed the abuses to the world and was subsequently arrested, jailed and beaten.

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