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Catholic Bishops Oppose Proposal to Embed 'Right to Abortion' in EU Charter

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Catholic bishops ahead of a European Union vote, express firm opposition to embedding a "right to abortion" in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.

Photo credit: Filip Mroz

Photo credit: Filip Mroz


By Catholic Online (California Network)
4/11/2024 (1 month ago)

Published in Marriage & Family

Keywords: European Union, Catholic bishops, abortion rights, right to life, women, France, charter

European parliament members are poised to vote on a proposal that would introduce a "right to abortion" in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The draft resolution aims to amend the charter to assert "everyone has the right to bodily autonomy, to free, informed, full, and universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights, and to all related health care services without discrimination, including access to safe and legal abortion."

However, the Commission of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Union (COMECE), comprising Catholic bishops from EU member states, released a statement dissenting from this proposal.

COMECE stated on April 9, "The promotion of women and their rights is not related to the promotion of abortion." They advocate for a Europe where women can freely embrace maternity as a gift without it hindering their personal, social, and professional lives. They assert that promoting and facilitating abortion opposes the genuine promotion of women and their rights.

The bishops emphasize that the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights cannot include rights that lack universal recognition and are divisive. They underline that the right to life is the foundational pillar of all human rights, particularly safeguarding the lives of the most vulnerable, including the unborn child.

France recently made history by enshrining a "right" to abortion in its constitution, marking a significant legislative move. Pro-life campaigners expressed dismay as lawmakers applauded the amendment, which garnered overwhelming support in both chambers of parliament.

French President Emmanuel Macron pledged to protect abortion rights against any potential future challenges, marking the formal incorporation of the amendment into the constitution on International Women's Day.

The Vatican reiterated that there is no legitimate right to take a human life and emphasized the imperative of prioritizing the protection of life, especially in contemporary challenging contexts.

In France, legalizing abortion as a right could potentially permit abortions up to birth for any reason, with any restrictions likely seen as infringing on this so-called right.

Earlier this year, thousands participated in the annual March for Life in Paris, urging lawmakers to reject the pro-abortion amendment.

Experts highlight that embedding abortion as a fundamental right signifies a radical shift by pro-abortion proponents, potentially elevating abortion to a sacrosanct status within the national framework.

Statistics from the French Ministry of Health underscore the prevalence of abortion, with thousands of lives terminated before birth annually.

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