Pro-Life Leader Chris Smith Chairs Hearing on China’s Forced Abortion Policy

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 10, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life Leader Chris Smith Chairs Hearing on China’s Forced Abortion Policy

by Steven Ertelt Editor
November 10
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — A panel of human rights activists testified at the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission today about how the Chinese government is abusing women and up-ending the traditional Chinese family. Pro-life leader Chris Smith led the hearing, which covered the Chinese one-child policy.

Rep. Chris Smith, a New Jersey Republican who is the ranking member of the Commission, chaired the hearing this afternoon.

Smith took the opportunity to call on President Obama to ensure that human rights do not take a backseat to economic issues during his state visit to China this week.

“Human rights are trivialized by China, and the United States has been sending a message that profits and money-making trumps human rights," Smith said.

“As President Obama embarks on this trip, we appeal to him to seriously raise the plight of Chinese women,” he said, in a statement sent to

Smith panned Obama for deciding to reauthorize $50 million in funds for the UNFPA, which has worked with the family planning officials in China who have forced women to have abortions to put them in prison for violating the policy.

“It is outrageous that the Obama Administration lavishly funds—to the tune of $50 million—organizations, including the U.N. Population Fund, that partner with China’s National Population Planning Commission," he said.

The Chinese government requires would-be parents to obtain permits before becoming pregnant, Smith noted.

Crippling, ruinous fines are levied on families who break the one-child policy, along with harassment and coerced abortions. Additionally, China suffers from the highest female suicide rate in the world, five times the international average, at a rate of 500 suicides per day, he said in his remarks.

Nicholas Eberstadt, a policy expert from the American Enterprise Institute, testified that the centuries-old traditional Chinese family has been abruptly dissolved, with millions of children now having no aunts or uncles, and no brothers and sisters.

“We have seen the emergence of the one child family and the end of 2,500 years of the traditional Chinese family,” Eberstadt said.

Rebiya Kadeer, a Muslim-Chinese native and former Chinese prisoner who heads the Uyghur-American Association, said the Obama administration is doing little to support dissident Chinese.

He said that after the July 2009 anti-government protests and uprising among the Uyghur people, the United States offered little protest at the arrest of 200 people, followed by rushed trials, hurried appeals and ultimately executions carried out this week.

“Because there was no reaction by the U.S., they began sentencing people,” said Kadeer. “Because of the silence of the U.S. administration we saw nine people executed yesterday.”

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