EXCLUSIVE: UN Agency Blocks Pro-Lifers from Conference
NEW YORK, October 18 (C-Fam) The pro-abortion UN Population Fund (UNFPA) does not want pro-life critics in attendance when the agency convenes a conference in Nairobi in mid-November.
UNFPA and the governments of Denmark and Kenya are co-hosting the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25: Accelerating the Promise to mark the 25th anniversary of the original and very controversial Cairo Conference on Population and Development.
UNFPA’s website claims the conference “will offer an inclusive platform, bringing together governments, civil society, private sector organizations, women’s’ groups and youth networks to discuss and agree on actions to accelerate implementation” of the Cairo Program of Action.
Pro-life groups with UN consultative status are wondering if this inclusion includes them. Sources have told the Friday Fax that only one ostensibly pro-life group has been accepted to attend, the only one that also boasts a “reproductive health” program. None of the major pro-life groups at the UN have been accepted, including C-Fam [publisher of the Friday Fax] and Family Watch International. The Washington DC-based Heritage Foundation has not been approved either.
Sharon Slater, president of Family Watch told the Friday Fax, “We are very concerned that many representatives from pro-life organizations in various countries who have tried to register for the upcoming Nairobi Summit have not had their registrations approved. This is very disturbing, especially since, UNFPA, lists as part of the organizing team for the Summit, many organizations which profit from or aggressively promote abortion including various Planned Parenthood entities, Women Deliver, Ipas (the manufacturer of “Easy Grip” handheld abortion device), and more.”
Slater continued, “This seems to be a new trend at the UN to discriminate openly against pro-life organizations so only aggressive pro-abortion voices can be heard. Just last month at the UN’s civil society conference held in Salt Lake City, Utah, our pro-life event was canceled just two days before the UN conference, even though it had been accepted, paid for, and tickets for speakers purchased.”
Most of the pro-life groups at the UN have fought a pitched battle with UNFPA over the years and have tended to cheer when the US government regularly defunds the $1 billion+ abortion behemoth.
The problem, as pro-lifers see it, is the Nairobi conference is going to produce a document that organizers will claim was negotiated and therefore obligatory upon UN Member States. If a document is negotiated, pro-life groups insist they need to be present to assist delegations in the process. The founders of the United Nations considered non-governmental organizations a central part of the UN process. NGOs actually assisted in the negotiation of the UN’s founding documents.
The Cairo Conference has long been controversial. It was there that certain restrictions were placed on UNFPA and UN abortion advocacy in general. For instance, abortion is cast in a negative light, as something to be avoided. Moreover, abortion is considered a matter for national governments and not for international organizations like the UN and UN agencies, like UNFPA. On the downside, it was in the Cairo document that “reproductive health” was defined as including abortion.
It is also not clear which major UN delegations will attend the conference. There may be some reluctance since the document under consideration has already been written by UNFPA, and there will be little or no chance to negotiate. The meeting from beginning to end appears to be fully orchestrated to get a particular result that UNFPA and other abortion advocates will then say is normative.