UN response to pandemic questioned
Political differences between the Trump Administration and the UN are known. In the current crisis, Trump warned the UN not to use American funding to impose abortion in its global campaign.
Access to abortion as an ‘essential service’ in COVID-19 pandemic health care emergency is questioned
UN cultural colonialism
In this respect, acting administrator of USAID (the United States Agency for international collaboration), John Barsa, criticized the draft UN document “Global Humanitarian Response Plan” which indirectly promotes values contrary to the defense of human life. In his letter (read HERE), Barsa urges the UN not to use the COVID-19 pandemic “as an opportunity to advance access to abortion as an ‘essential service’”, adding that “To use the COVID-19 pandemic as a justification to pressure governments to change their laws is an affront to the autonomy each society to determine its own national policies on health care.” (Acting Administrator John Barsa’s Letter to UN Secretary-General Guterres, May 18, 2020).
The present official letter is of particular interest to those who defend life from conception. We excerpt what in our opinion are the more interesting points:
UN response to pandemic questioned. Promotion of abortion with COVID 19 funds
“The UN’s Global Humanitarian Response Plan (Global HRP), and its $6.71 billion coordinated appeals (the US have already provided $45.3 million), must remain focused on addressing the most urgent, concrete needs that are arising out of the pandemic.”
John Barsa continues with a strong critical appraisal of the UN response to the pandemic, “[…] Unfortunately, the Global HRP does just this (promote access to abortion as an ‘essential service’), by cynically placing the provision of “sexual and reproductive health services” on the same level of importance as food-insecurity, essential health care, malnutrition, shelter, and sanitation. Most egregious is that the Global HRP calls for the widespread distribution of abortion-inducing drugs and abortion supplies, and for the promotion of abortion in local country settings.”
“[T]he UN should not intimidate or coerce the Member States that are committed to the right to life”
The USAID administrator underlines the US position in the abortion debate, “Under the leadership of President Donald J. Trump, the United States has made clear that we will “never tire of defending innocent life.” President Trump said in his address to the 74th UN General Assembly that the UN simply has “no business attacking the sovereignty of nations that wish to protect innocent life.” Indeed, the UN should not intimidate or coerce the Member States that are committed to the right to life. To use the COVID-19 pandemic as a justification to pressure governments to change their laws is an affront to the autonomy of each society to determine its own national policies on health care. The United States stands with nations that have pledged to protect the unborn.”
John Barsa concluded his letter with a call for unity: “Now is not the time to add unnecessary discord”
He said: “To achieve global unity toward this goal, it is essential that the UN’s response to the pandemic avoid creating controversy. Therefore, I ask that you remove references to “sexual and reproductive health” and its derivatives from the Global HRP, and drop the provision of abortion as an essential component of the UN’s priorities to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
He concluded: “Member States are deeply divided over the use of the term “sexual and reproductive health” and its derivatives, and it is among the most polarizing issues raised in UN negotiations. The Global HRP, and the activities of UN agencies and bodies moving forward, should use clear language and take clear action to address the real needs of vulnerable people around the world without promoting abortion. Now is not the time to add unnecessary discord to the COVID-19 response.”
Our Observatory agrees with the contents of the letter and the defense of the autonomy of each country: “The UN should not intimidate or coerce the Member States that are committed to the right to life”, and the request to remove references to “sexual and reproductive health” in the aforementioned Global HRP.
Read other recent intervention promoting his ideological principles: