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Rome Reports

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European bishops: Abortion is not a human right

The European Parliament is expected to vote on a report calling on EU member states to ensure universal access to safe and legal abortions. 

The Matic report, as it's being called, comes in response to what it says was a disruption to “access to essential medical services such as contraception and abortion care” due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Ahead of a vote, the Commission of the European Bishops' Conferences released a document to address the report's “one-sided” treatment of the issue of abortion, emphasizing that abortion is not a human right. 

General Secretary, Commission of European Bishops' Conferences
“The main danger with this kind of resolution proposal is that it creates a certain mentality, or it tends to make people think that abortion is a human right, that it belongs to the right of human health.”

Fr. Manuel Barrios Prieto is the General Secretary of the Commission of European Bishops' Conferences. He says society must take a more holistic view of sexual health that doesn't solely hinge on abortion. 

General Secretary, Commission of European Bishops' Conferences
“We have to try to improve sexual education and sexual health in a broad sense, but once this is narrowed or reduced to just the question of abortion, and allowing abortion, and seeing abortion as a human right, I think we go in a very unilateral direction, as we say in the statement we made.”

Earlier this month, a delegation from the European Bishops' conferences travelled to Rome to meet with Pope Francis. 

Although talks on abortion were not on their agenda, the statement from the European bishops shows it remains a topic of concern to the Church in Europe.