(C-Fam) EU and U.S. diplomats accused their counterparts from pro-family countries of turning against women’s rights and of acting in bad faith at the close of the UN Commission on the Status of Women last week. Media outlets around the world echoed this narrative uncritically.
Germany’s DW reported on anonymous “diplomatic circles” who accused the Vatican, Cuba, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain as playing “a very bad role” with “attacks against gender equality.”
France’s LeMonde quoted the German Deputy Ambassador to the UN, Günter Sautter, who denounced “the systematic attempts by certain delegations to derail the process and call into question international commitments and obligations on gender equality.” “The repression of women’s rights continues,” he lamented.
According to the Washington Post, “[a] European diplomat, who refused to be named, said Russia had ‘played an exceptionally disruptive role in the negotiation.’” He reportedly went on to describe this as “sabotage” and “repression of women’s rights.”
Disappointed with a document that didn’t advance their priorities on abortion and LGBTIQ issues, the U.S., EU and other progressive countries were in damage control delivering their national statements after the adoption of the final document at the 65th meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
“We have a text that barely squeaked by on a very tepid consensus,” said U.S. representative Courtney Nemeroff. Nemeroff described a disrespectful negotiation process, calling out some delegations for engaging in delay tactics. She accused one delegation of “water[ing] down language on women and girls with disabilities,” and described how a single delegation was responsible for the rejection of a reference to a Security Council resolution that deals with women’s participation in conflict resolution.
What Nemeroff didn’t mention was that the paragraph with the disabilities reference also included language on girls’ autonomous decision-making, which appeared in many places throughout the text and was intended to undermine parental rights. The Security Council reference was opposed by other delegations, including the 54-country African Group, preferring that Security Council and CSW mandates remain separate.
‘Negotiations were overshadowed by a small but vocal minority that wanted to roll back progress,” said the diplomat from the United Kingdom.
“The systematic attempts by some delegations to derail the process and question international commitments and obligations on gender equality demonstrates that the pushback against gender equality continues,” said the German delegate speaking on behalf of the EU.
In addition to abortion, LGBTQI+ rights, and sexual rights for children, this year, progressive countries worked hard to minimize language on the importance of protecting the family, recognition for motherhood, and the role of mothers as leaders in society. All this was wholly ignored by the media reports.
Member States came to consensus on language to prevent discrimination and violence against women and girls and to help foster women’s participation in public and political space. However conservative countries rejected problematic text that would give UN agencies a mandate to push their sexual rights agenda through programs to empower women and girls.
Developing countries that are the target of these programs are now more aware of the sexual autonomy programming coming through the UN’s Population Fund (UNFPA), children’s agency (UNICEF), and education agency (UNESCO).
A UNFPA program designed to train peer educators asks youth about oral sex, sexual fantasies, and viewing erotic material. A CSE guideline by UNESCO used throughout the UN system normalizes masturbation for young children. A recent comment from an expert human rights body on children’s internet access suggests children involved in sexting should be provided a private online forum to do it.
Programs aimed at children are designed without parental oversight or permission and UN agencies use abortion groups like International Planned Parenthood Federation and its affiliates to implement.
The EU delegate said they will increase efforts to achieve their goals in other forums outside the General Assembly. This week, together with the government of Mexico, UN Women has convened the Generation Equality Forum, whose outcome will not be open for debate and discussion by Member States. Likewise, in November of 2019, UNFPA convened a conference in Nairobi releasing a set of commitments that went well beyond what Member States have agreed to.
Delegates from pro-family countries told the Friday Fax that diplomats from the EU employed intimidation tactics, complaining to their superiors in New York as well as their capitals. Such bullying runs counter to the stated position of the European delegates who support anti-harassment, inclusivity and diversity language in the text.
LifeNews.com Note: Lisa Correnti writes for the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. This article originally appeared in the pro-life group’s Friday Fax publication and is used with permission.