Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Bush Administration Frustrating U.N. Population Control Advocates

WASHINGTON, June 21, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.net) -  Disgruntled U.N. officials and population control advocates have expressed indignation with the Bush administration's increased efforts to cut all funding to the United Nations Population Fund, the population control wing of the United Nations which has been implicated in human rights abuses in China involving coerced abortion and sterilization.

The critics, many of them speaking anonymously because the U.S. is the leading contributor of their agencies, complained that the administration's efforts are undermining their advances in "family planning" around the world.  Sterling Scruggs, a former official in charge of external relations for the Population Fund, said his agency was being "blackballed. They've defunded us, and even that isn't enough. It's unbelievable."   

The Administration angered these groups most recently by refusing to fund an international health conference in June that featured the UNFPA and other pro-abortion groups and by recent private warnings to groups, such as UNICEF, that their funding could be jeopardized if they insist on cooperating with the Population Fund.  The administration has also indicated that it hopes to persuade the United Nations' Latin American caucus to back away from a position that seems to promote abortion. 

In a letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell on Friday, four Democratic members of Congress replied by demanding a legal explanation for withholding money from the fund and for the "threatened defunding of the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children Fund."  "When will the President's right wing be satisfied - when they close down the U.N.?," said Democratic Representative Carolyn B. Maloney of New York.

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