The Vatican issued a strong statement this week against a growing push to legalize abortion in South American countries because of the Zika virus.
Meanwhile, Pope Francis said abortion is not a solution to the Zika virus.
“Abortion is not a lesser evil — it’s a crime,” Pope Francis said. He added that it is the deliberate taking of an innocent human life, calling abortion “an absolute evil.”
“Don’t confuse avoiding pregnancy with abortion,” the Pope said, adding that contraception is definitely preferable to aborting a disabled baby.
Abortion activists have been exploiting the health crisis because of a possible link between the virus and microcephaly, a neurological disorder where a baby’s head is significantly smaller and the brain is abnormally developed, according to the Mayo Clinic. Several South American countries have reported an alarming spike in the number of babies born with microcephaly in the past few months. The disorder is not typically fatal, but it can cause health problems throughout the child’s life.
In an eugenic-like push, abortion activists argue that South American countries should legalize abortion so that women infected with the virus can abort unborn babies who may have the disorder. The link between the virus and microcephaly has not been confirmed.
Vatican officials told the United Nations this week that abortion is wrong, and it will not solve the health crisis, according to The Guardian.
“It must be emphasised that a diagnosis of microcephaly in a child should not warrant a death sentence,” said Archbishop Bernardito Auza, the Vatican representative to the UN. Such a response would be “the confirmation of a failure of the international community to stop the spread of the disease.”
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“Not only is increased access to abortion and abortifacients an illegitimate response to this crisis, but since it terminates the life of a child it is fundamentally not preventative,” the Vatican continued.
Right before the Vatican statement, the UN announced a $65 million World Health Organization campaign to tackle the spread of the virus, according to the report. It is unclear if the campaign will include any abortion advocacy; but the UN recently recommended that countries affected by Zika legalize abortion.
The Catholic Archdiocese of Olinda and Recife in Brazil also condemned the push to abort disabled babies earlier this month, LifeNews previously reported.
“Nothing justifies an abortion,” said the Rev. Luciano Brito, spokesman for the archdiocese. “Just because a fetus has microcephaly won’t make us favorable [to abortion].”
Most countries in South America protect unborn babies’ lives by heavily restricting or banning abortion. On Feb. 9, Paraguay’s Public Health Minister Antonio Barrios announced that the country will not legalize abortion, despite the pressure from abortion activists.
There is growing uncertainty about whether the virus and the microcephaly cases actually are connected. Thomas D. Williams recently wrote at Breitbart, “Though the Brazil Ministry of Health has registered an unusually high number of babies born with microcephaly, 96% of these cases occurred without the mothers having been infected with the Zika virus at all, which means that the cause must be sought elsewhere.”
Abortion activists’ goals in South America are extremely disturbing. Microcephaly is difficult to detect until later in pregnancy, which means either that abortion activists want to legalize late-term abortions or they want numerous early-term unborn babies to be aborted without actually knowing if they have the disorder.
The situation also points to the fact that abortion activists believe people with disabilities like microcephaly should be targeted for abortion – an idea that concerns many disability rights advocates, even some who support abortion.
The World Health Organization has declared the Zika virus outbreak an international health emergency. No vaccine or cure has been developed yet.