UN    FEMINISTS WANT CATHOLIC TEACHING DECLARED 'CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY'
A coalition of feminist groups want the United Nations' new International Criminal Court (ICC) to declare the Catholic Church's teaching on abortion a 'crime against humanity,' according to the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-Fam).
   C-Fam has publicised a new pamphlet by the Women's Caucus for Gender Justice which asks governments to push the ICC as an enforcement mechanism for non-binding resolutions such as the Platform of Action from the Beijing Women's Conference. Although the platform never received a consensus, the caucus calls the ICC a means of 'furthering the Beijing agenda.'
   At a Rome conference two years ago, feminists introduced the concept of 'enforced pregnancy,' referring to places where abortion is illegal although feminists claimed it only meant pregnancy by rape. In their pamphlet feminists contend that 'withholding abortion from raped women should be explicitly defined as a war crime and a crime against humanity.' C-Fam said: 'This position is troubling to Catholics since it would explicitly name a part of their religious beliefs, that abortion is always wrong, a crime against humanity.'
   C-Fam also reported that some critics are also concerned with the term 'sexual slavery' that has entered the ICC document. Feminists claim the term refers only to the kind of prostitution women are sometimes forced into during armed conflict. The same feminists, however, in a 1991 Utah court case, referred to marriage as 'sexual slavery.'
   
CWN
26/3/00

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