UN Committee Against Torture Blasts Ireland’s Pro-Life Laws

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 23, 2011   |   4:12PM   |   New York, NY

The UN Committee against Torture, responsible for monitoring signatory countries’ implementation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, has issued its most recent concluding observations resulting from the 46th session which reviewed Ireland’s implementation of the treaty.

The 10 member Committee urges Ireland to enact changes in law and policy to allow access to abortion despite the fact that the Irish constitution protects the right to life of unborn children. The Irish constitution “acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”

The recommendations issued by the treaty body seek the establishment of guidelines specifying the circumstances when women can procure abortion and the establishment of  “services” for abortions. The Committee states that Ireland must establish “adequate services for carrying out abortions in the State party, so that its law and practice is in conformity with the Convention,” despite the fact that the Convention against Torture does not reference or mention abortion. The argument by the Committee that access to abortion is necessary to “conform” to the treaty is an example of the pro-abortion strategy to create a “right to abortion” by stating falsehoods about international law and treaties over and over again until they begin to be treated as truth.

According to Marie Smith, Director of the Parliamentary Network for Critical Issues (PNCI), “In this observation we read the most radical pro-abortion view coming from the Committee against Torture pressuring Ireland to provide access to abortion despite the fact that the treaty has nothing to do with abortion. The Convention is distorted to equate laws that protect unborn children from abortion with cruelty to women while ignoring the inhumane treatment of unborn children through the violence of abortion.”

“The deliberate manipulation of this treaty which was enacted to protect lives in order to advance a radical pro-abortion agenda is a disservice to the women, men and children around the world who suffer daily from cruel and degrading treatment as well as outright torture,” Smith said.

Smith continues, “Hopefully the Irish government recognizes its sovereign right to determine its laws on abortion and maintains its constitutional protection for unborn children which results in Ireland-with the world’s lowest maternal mortality rate-being the safest place in the world for women to give birth.”

The Convention against Torture is one of the six treaties targeted for manipulation in the pro-abortion legal toolbox to advance the concept of abortion as a human right. New interpretations of these six treaties seek to create a “norm” or consensus that abortion is a human right in order to exert pressure on governments to overturn laws against abortion and are a departure from the actual intent of the treaties.

This tactic has support from the top UN entity tasked with oversight of human rights, the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights. The office and the High Commissioner are partnering with radical pro-abortion activists and organizations to promote abortion as part of maternal health and as a human right as evidenced in last week’s release of the report Practices in adopting a human rights-based approach to eliminate preventable maternal mortality and human rights (A/HRC/18/27) which urges States to eliminate laws against abortion under the guise of human rights and the reduction of maternal mortality.