Holy See: Aborting the Disabled No Cure for Prejudice

Finds UN Convention Fundamentally Faulty

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ROME, DEC. 4, 2008 (Zenit.org).- The U.N. International Day of Persons With Disabilities focused attention on a convention that aims to stop prejudice against the handicapped, but the agreement is fundamentally flawed, attests the Holy See.



The U.N. day, celebrated Wednesday, had the theme: "Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities: Dignity and Justice for All of Us."

The convention has been signed by 136 member states, but the Holy See is not one of them and will not be if the wording is not changed. This is because in various propositions, the convention leaves the door open to aborting the handicapped because of their disabilities.

Though the Holy See contributed to the preparation of the text, its request to include an explicit rejection of the aborting of the disabled was not accepted.

Franco Previte, the president of the Italian association Christians for Service, applaudes the Holy See's refusal to sign the convention.

"The methods of reproductive health, mentioned in articles 23b and 25a of the convention, can give room for selective abortion, promoting abortive birth control, the limitations of births and sterilizations -- means that offend human dignity," he told ZENIT.

"If practices such as abortion, sterilization and euthanasia are not explicitly rejected," Previte added, "there is the possibility that those who are disabled, especially psychologically disabled persons, would be sterilized or euthanized to halt the diffusion of genetic disabilities."

"Thus," he said, "we find ourselves before the denial of the right to life, a fundamental right for humanity."