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International Women’s Day celebrates landmark Beijing Platform for Action

by | Mar 9, 2015

Editor’s note. International Woman’s Day was celebrated yesterday. The following is a news release from “MCCL Go,” a pro-life NGO global outreach program of the Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life Education Fund.

This year’s celebration will emphasize the landmark Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which is marking its twentieth anniversary in 2015.

Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life Global Outreach (MCCL GO) urges nations to pursue gender equality and women’s rights without promoting or expanding access to abortion.

The Beijing Platform for Action never advocates the legalization of abortion. The Platform quotes from the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development: “In no case should abortion be promoted as a method of family planning. … Any measures or changes related to abortion within the health system can only be determined at the national or local level according to the national legislative process” (paragraph 106-k).

Gender equality and female empowerment do not require legalized abortion or access to abortion.

MCCL GO also encourages nations to prioritize maternal health care and combat all forms of violence against women, including sex-selective abortion and forced abortion. The Platform for Action describes forced abortion, forced sterilization, sex-selective abortion, and female infanticide as acts of violence against women (paragraph 115).

The Platform for Action calls for the elimination of “all forms of discrimination against the girl child and the root causes of son preference, which result in harmful and unethical practices such as prenatal sex selection and female infanticide; this is often compounded by the increasing use of technologies to determine foetal sex, resulting in abortion of female foetuses” (277-c). It also calls for governments to “enact and enforce legislation protecting girls from all forms of violence, including female infanticide and prenatal sex selection” (283-d).

The fifty-ninth session of the Commission on the Status of Women, which will take place March 9-20 at the United Nations in New York, will review implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action.