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TV documentary sparks abortion debate


The image in a TV documentary last night of a four-week old foetus being aborted has reignited the abortion debate in Australia.

The Herald-Sun reports that the ABC Compass documentary My foetus - produced by Channel 4 in the UK - showed a foetus being sucked from a woman's womb by suction aspiration, which is used in Australia for abortions up to 12 weeks.

It also showed the remains of foetuses aborted at 10, 11 and 21 weeks.

Yesterday abortion rights activists concentrated on federal Health Minister Tony Abbott, a devout Catholic and anti-abortionist, wielding coat-hangers at a protest in Sydney. The coat-hangers represent women who died in dangerous "backyard" abortions.

Mr Abbott yesterday welcomed a public debate on abortion in Australia.

"I think the hundred thousand abortions we have in Australia every year are a national tragedy, and the interesting thing is that a lot of people who were the great advocates of choice two decades ago are themselves having second thoughts," he told Channel 9.

Australian Democrats Senator Natasha Stott Despoja warned the minister not to tamper with abortion access for women.

SOURCE
TV report sparks abortion debate (Herald-Sun 9/8/04)
My Foetus (Channel 4 UK)
ABC TV Compass
LINKS
My Foetus and the ensuing debate over abortion (Bishop Anthony Fisher OP, Archdiocese of Sydney, 6/8/04)
Pro-choice advocates slam Abbott (Sydney Morning Herald 8/8/04)
Health Insurance Commission puts pressure on abortion providers (ABC Radio The World Today 6/8/04)
Abortion Documentary - Every Child Must Be Wanted! (Family Planning Association NSW)
Trauma warning on ABC abortion film (Catholic Weekly 8/8/04)
South African bishops protest over abortion bill (Independent Catholic News 5/8/04)
Abbott says abortion film "will do no harm" (CathNews 12/7/04)
Merits of abortion program debated (ABC Radio PM 9/7/04)
ABC to show operation footage (The Australian 9/7/04)
Feminists call for abortion debate (The Australialn 12/7/04)
Julia Black: Why I filmed abortion (The Sunday Age 11/7/04)
Ruling on foetus saves abortion laws (The Guardian 9/7/04)
European court denies personhood and human rights to unborn child (Catholic News Agency 9/7/04)
Two mothers share own stories with teens at right-to-life convention (Catholic News Service 8/7/04)
London: charges dropped against pro-life campaigner (Independent Catholic News 9/7/04)
The hidden wonder of new life (The Tablet 10/7/04)
Melinda Tankard Reist: Deadly price of choice (The Australian 12/7/04)
Switzerland has opened door to genetic discrimination, say ethicists (British Medical Journal 10/7/04
ABC to screen abortion documentary (ABC Radio The World Today 9/7/04)
Church responds to proposed changes in UK abortion law (CathNews 9/7/04)
Ratzinger clarification says it's OK to vote for pro-abortion politicians (CathNews 8/7/04)
Abbott calls Catholics to action over abortion (CathNews 29/4/04)
Ultimate Pro-Life Links
LifeSite
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9 Aug 2004