Canadian Government Doesn’t Promote Abortion at G8 Meeting in Halifax

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 27, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Canadian Government Doesn’t Promote Abortion at G8 Meeting in Halifax

by Steven Ertelt Editor
April 27
, 2010

Ottawa, Canada ( — The Canadian government will not add the promotion of abortion to the list of initiatives designed to promote women and children’s health at the G8 meeting. A top government spokeswoman confirmed that Canadian officials are open to promoting family planning, but not abortion.

International Cooperation Minister Bev Oda said the government would consider funding “family planning” measures such as “the use of contraceptive methods.”

"Canada’s contribution to maternal and child health may involve various interventions, including family planning, which includes the use of contraceptive methods. The details remain to be determined; however, Canada’s contribution will not include funding of abortions,” she explained.

Oda said, "We’re not debating abortion; we’re clarifying family planning," according to CBC News.

"The government of Canada agrees with the internationally-accepted definition of family planning, as agreed to by the World Health Organization, UN and G8 development agencies," she said, which excludes abortion. "This includes a woman’s ability to space and limit her pregnancies, which has a direct impact on her health and well-being, as well as on the outcome of each pregnancy."

Liberal MP Bob Rae told reporters outside the House of Commons that he is upset by the move and said it would reverse decades of Canadian policies promoting abortion abroad.

"They just reopened the abortion debate," he complained.

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the G8 initiative to “improve the health of women and children in the world’s poorest regions” in January, but he has been pressured by pro-abortion MPs and groups to promote abortion ever since.

Making good on the promise, Oda made no mention of Canada’s position on abortion in her opening statement. During the five minute address, she talked about legitimate health issues, not abortion.

"We know we have the means and the tools to make a difference for millions of mothers, newborns, and young children in developing countries," she said, according to Metro News.

Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff previously urged Prime Minister Stephen Harper to include abortion promotion as part of an initiative with G8 countries.

Jim Hughes, the president of Campaign Life Coalition, responded to Ignatieff after his call for promoting abortion.

"Michael Ignatieff once again shows his extreme pro-abortion position in order to garner what he assumes will translate into pro-abortion votes for his leaderless Liberal Party," he said.

"We understand that Ignatieff is not speaking on behalf of his entire caucus but the Women’s Caucus of the Liberal Party," he continued. "IPPF is the leading promoter of abortion in developing countries."

The pro-life group congratulated Harper for focusing only on legitimate health concerns.

"This care will include safe water and good pregnancy treatment and care before and after the child is born," said Hughes. "This care is provided by positive organizations such as MaterCare International."

Hughes also commented on Ignatieff’s statement that "the right to abortion is too sacred to become a political football" and "women are entitled to the full gamet of reproductive health services and that includes termination of pregnancy (abortion) and contraception."

He said it shows clearly to all Canadians who has a hidden, and now exposed, political agenda.

"Ignatieff has become a mouthpiece for the pro-abortion activists within his party," he explained.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said recently, "you cannot have maternal health without reproductive health and reproductive health includes contraception and family planning and access to legal, safe abortions."

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