Last weekend, a militant group of more than 300 pro-abortion activists attacked a much smaller group of pro-life demonstrators, who had gathered to pray peacefully in front of a hospital in Paris where abortions are done.
During the attack, elderly people were thrown to the ground, despite attempts on the part of French riot police to protect them. A man in his fifties was shoved against the window of a café which shattered. Pro-life blogger Jill Stanek noted the attack and posted text from an email from Rod Murphy, author of the book, Stopping Abortions at Death’s Door, who received information from his nephew Niall Murphy in France about the attack.
“When I arrived with my car, I saw the group between 150 and 200 people already there, and therefore was happy of that success. When I got closer, and in order to park my car nearby, I realized it was not my group,” Murphy says in the email. “Finally, I saw my group, they were approximately 15. Mostly women between 60 and 80 years old! one priest, and a couple of 20 years old students. When I got to them, they were praying for the aborted babies occurring in the hospital, but also for their lives because the opposing group was now marching towards us.”
“The anti riot police came between us and them, and advised us to hide behind their truck. The opposing group was now throwing eggs and other stuff at us,” the report continued. “One small group of leftists succeeded to go through the police, and jumped on the guy in our group who was holding our flag. They broke the flag and his glasses.We stayed there one hour and a half, and the police escorted us to the subway.”
“I’m happy for that experience, and for the first time in my life, concerning the matter of abortion, I’ve been able to see clearly where the real violence came from. The next step is to find a way to contact these women in distress without ourselves being attacked,” it said.
In response to the violent assault on peaceful pro-life witnesses, Fr. Peter West, Vice President for Missions for Human Life International, said, “If people advocate violence to solve the problem of an unwanted pregnancy, can we be surprised that they resort to violence in order to silence anyone who disagrees with their views?
“A man from France who witnessed this violence told me ‘These events gives us a glimpse of a dark moment for our country, more than ever we must pray and pray again, because prayer is stronger than violence,'” he said.
West is concerned that French press and politicians are ignoring the violent assault.
“Since the French media have apparently ignored this story, Human Life International is calling for French President Nicholas Sarkozy to unequivocally condemn these attacks, and to ensure that peaceful demonstrators will be protected against such senseless violence in the future,” he said.
“Please pray for pro-life Christians in France and throughout the world who are persecuted for their faith and their defense of life. Pray also for the misguided souls who are responsible for these attacks and the violence committed every day against pre-born children,” he concluded.