Abortions took precedence over food for starving people in the Middle East this week at the United Nations.
Elyssa Koren, director of United Nations advocacy for Alliance Defending Freedom International, criticized the global agency for failing to agree on a coronavirus aid agreement at a time of desperate need for many countries.
In a piece at National Review, Koren said about 10 million people are at risk of imminent starvation in Yemen, but because the relief agreement did not include elective abortions, it was sabotaged.
“… this process — and the prospect of a unified U.N. response to the problem of food shortages — was sabotaged by the U.N. Fund for Population’s (UNFPA) myopic preoccupation with abortion,” Koren said.
The U.N. Commission on Population and Development met virtually throughout June to negotiate a text on nutrition and COVID-19. Rather than overcome disagreement in the interest of urgent action, the text was withdrawn on Monday due to continued controversy over abortion. Luxembourg, which is in charge of the negotiation process, decided to withdraw the entire text rather than compromise to reach a plan for COVID-19 relief that did not include abortion.
This withdrawal reveals that the entrenched ideology of promoting elective abortion supersedes all humanitarian interests. In response to this emphasis on abortion — a shameful prioritization entirely unrelated to the theme of COVID-19 and nutrition — the U.S. and other countries insisted that the text remain focused on the assigned theme.
This week, the United Nations drew attention to the food crisis in Yemen, predicting a famine and massive starvation unless something is done soon, according to Al Jazeera News.
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Though the country desperately needs food and abortions are illegal there, UNFPA wants to send abortion kits there. According to Koren’s report, the UNFPA Minimum Initial Services Package includes “reproductive health materials” for women and girls. She said these materials include abortion tools such as vacuum extractors and cranioclasts for crushing unborn babies’ skulls.
President Donald Trump’s administration has been pushing back against abortion advocacy at the United Nations. For the past three years, his administration has stopped giving taxpayer funding to UNFPA because of its links to forced abortions and sterilizations in China.
In May, the Trump administration slammed the United Nations for trying to “intimidate” pro-life countries into legalizing abortion on demand with coronavirus aid funds.
“The UN should not intimidate or coerce Member States that are committed to the right to life,” U.S. Agency for International Development acting administrator John Barsa wrote in a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
“To use the COVID-19 pandemic as a justification to pressure governments to change their laws [on abortion] is an affront to the autonomy of each society to determine its own national policies on health care. The United States stands with nations that have pledged to protect the unborn,” Barsa continued.
Barsa told the UN to remove “sexual and reproductive health services” as priorities in its Global Humanitarian Response Plan COVID-19. He noted how the UN plan puts abortions “on the same level of importance as food-insecurity, essential health care, malnutrition, shelter, and sanitation.”
Recently, medical groups representing more than 30,000 doctors in America emphasized that abortions are not “essential” or “urgent,” and abortion facilities that continue to operate during the pandemic are being “medically irresponsible.”