The United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW) is “the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women.” Thousands of delegates from all over the world have been meeting in New York from March 10 to 21. Women’s Rights Without Frontiers President Reggie Littlejohn was asked to speak about “Violence Against Pregnant Women.”
Here is a summary of her remarks:
While many women in the United States and internationally suffer from domestic violence while pregnant, only in China are women dragged out of their homes and forcibly aborted and sterilized by their government. China’s One Child Policy causes more violence against pregnant women than any other official policy on earth and any other official policy in the history of the world. Forced abortion is official government rape.
China Has Not Abandoned Its One Child Policy
Rather, China has merely lifted the ban on a second child, if either parent is an only child. This is not a wholesale “easing” of the One Child Policy. It is a minor adjustment.
As recently as March 6, 2014, Li Bin, minister in charge of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, stated, “The basic family planning principle has not changed as the country is still the world’s most populous.” She also stated that there is “no timetable for allowing every couple to have a second child.”
To say that China has “relaxed” or “eased” its One Child Policy under these circumstances is entirely unwarranted.
Regardless of the number of children allowed, women who get pregnant without permission will still be dragged out of their homes, strapped down to tables and forced to abort babies that they want, even up to the ninth month of pregnancy. Pro-choice and pro-life advocates can agree: no one supports forced abortion, because it is not a choice.
WRWF Calls for an Investigation of UNFPA
The UNCSW, moreover, should follow its own advice to “condemn and take action to prevent violence against women . . .” by thoroughly investigating the activities of the UNFPA in China. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell found the UNFPA to be complicit with coercive family planning in China. WRWF believes that any independent investigation of the UNFPA’s current practices would arrive at the same conclusion.
The UNCSW would not be the first to undertake such an investigation. In a striking blow against China’s One Child Policy, the European Parliament passed a resolution strongly condemning forced abortion and involuntary sterilization in China and globally, citing Feng Jianmei, who was forcibly aborted at seven months in June, 2012. Specifically, the resolution, 2012/2712 (RSP) “strongly condemns the decision to force Ms. Feng to have an abortion and condemns the practice of forced abortions and sterilizations globally, especially in the context of the one-child policy.” The resolution further states that “the EU has provided, and still provides, funds for organizations involved in family planning policies in China,” and “urges the Commission to ensure that its funding of projects does not breach” the European Parliament’s commitment against coercive population control.
For decades, the UNFPA has worked hand in hand with the Chinese population control machine, which is coercive. We have no doubt that any unbiased investigation by the European Parliament, the United Nations, or any other governmental body will reveal that UNFPA is complicit with coercive family planning in China. The UNCSW should likewise undertake such an investigation.
Others speaking about Violence Against Pregnant Women were Vinita Shaw of the Disha Foundation (India) and Millie Lace of Concepts of Truth. Cindy Collins of Speak Hope International chaired the event, which was presented by Endeavor Forum.