Abortion Hard-Liners Want U.S. Kicked Out of G7
WASHINGTON, D.C. May 17 (C-Fam) In a series of catty comments on social media, abortion advocates, including one former government minister, have questioned whether the United States should be allowed to remain in the Group of 7 (G7) coalition of the world’s largest economies. Their enmity toward the U.S.? Abortion.
The comments came at the end of a two-day Parisian meeting on gender equality last week in advance of its annual August summit. At the closing event, the German representative lamented the absence of “sexual and reproductive health and rights” in the outcome declaration. The German’s complaint drew applause from many in the room, and a flurry of angry Tweets by abortion proponents.
Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand as well as former head of the United Nations Development Program, responded, “This is preposterous – are they heading to a G6!”
Representatives of the pro-abortion International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC) agreed, “They should just kick [the U.S.] out already. Seriously.”
Commentators noted that Germany’s comment, clearly pointed at the U.S., was about more than just the G7 declaration: the U.S. recently blocked similar language in a UN Security Council resolution despite strong efforts by Germany to include it.
The G7 also includes the U.K., Canada, Italy, Japan, and France, which will be hosting the summit later this year in Biarritz. This group of the most industrialized countries accounts for 10% of the world’s population, but 40% of global GDP. The irony about calling for the U.S. to be thrown out of this group is that the U.S. has the largest economy in the world, larger than all the other members of the G7 combined.
The gender equality ministerial meeting had three main priorities: combating violence against women, women’s education, and women’s economic empowerment, with a particular focus on Africa. The French organizers planned to draft a list of laws “best able to benefit women globally” and present them at the meeting, hoping that each G7 country would ultimately pledge to amend its own laws in some way to advance women’s rights.
However, the promised list was not delivered by the close of the meeting; the Gender Advisory Council set up during Canada’s G7 presidency last year requested more time to finalize the list, and will meet again in July.
One member of the advisory council is actress and feminist activist Emma Watson, who delivered a statement denouncing the U.S.’s refusal to redefine humanitarian law to include abortion in cases of wartime rape. Watson also noted that not all G-7 countries have ratified the UN’s treaty on eliminating discrimination against women (CEDAW)—again, singling out the U.S.
Since the election of President Trump, the U.S. has maintained a strong pro-life position in the G7, despite pressure from some of its other members and the wider abortion lobby. At past years’ summits held in Italy and Canada, language on “sexual and reproductive heath” was blocked by the U.S.
Katja Iversen, head of the pro-abortion organization Women Deliver, Tweeted that several countries were willing to agree to a six-country declaration rather than accept the compromise with the U.S., which was ultimately adopted. She commented that the applause following the German expression of disappointment was the longest of any at the panels during the meeting.
The U.S. was not deterred by the abortion proponents’ frustration. According to the translated account of one Swiss reporter, “beside the German minister, the American representative, smiling, does not flinch.”