The Vatican's Secretary of State, Tarcisio Bertone, has commented on Amnesty International's policy on sexual and reproductive rights -- including on selected aspects of abortion -- and said that the view of the Vatican is that abortion should not be available to rape victims.
Amnesty has argued that its position is consistent with international human rights. It highlights some of the human rights issues in realtion to abortion as follows:
women are sentenced to death for obtaining an abortion after trials that fail to meet international human rights standards for fair trials in countries such as Nigeria;
women are arrested, prosecuted and imprisoned for having abortions when the evidence supported their defense of having had a spontaneous miscarriage;
women with ectopic pregnancies (when the embryo attaches to the fallopian tube and has no chance of survival but when untreated can cause the fallopian tube to burst, threatening the woman's life and, if she survives, her fertility) were denied life saving medical intervention.
Amnesty's deputy general secretary, Kate Gilmore, has denied that the organisation has become "pro-abortion" and insisted that it took as its guide legal and not theological imperatives. "Amnesty International's position is not for abortion as a right but for women's human rights to be free of fear, threat and coercion as they manage all consequences of rape and other grave human rights violations," she said.
She is right, isn't she?