Court asked to stop confab session on abortion

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Atty. Jo Imbong (right) files a complaint before the Pasay City RTC on Monday against the 7th Asia Conference on Reproductive Sexual Health and Rights in Manila particularly on topics, which expressly advocate access to abortion.

MANILA, Jan. 21, 2014— A pro-life group has asked the court to block topics and discussion on “access to abortion” in an international conference on supposed reproductive health in Manila. 

In their complaint filed before the Pasay City Regional Trial Court on Monday, the Pro-Life Philippines said that abortion is a crime and advocacy of access to it is against the law. 

The group asked the court to issue a temporary restraining order against the particular sessions during 7th Asia Conference on Reproductive Sexual Health and Rights at the Philippine International Convention Center. 

The conference will open on Tuesday, Jan. 21, and ends on Friday, Jan. 24. 

“The advocacy of access to abortion is contrary to good customs and public morals,” the Pro-Life Philippines said in their 10-page complaint. 

“The TRO is necessary because the conference itself is an affront to this nation that respects and upholds life and condemns abortion,” said Eric Manalang, Pro-Life Philippines president. 

Abortion is crime 

Atty. Jo Imbong, senior counsel of the St. Thomas More Law Society on the complaint, said that advocacy on abortion “insults and mocks” the law of the Philippines, being the host country. 

“Under the law, publicly spousing crime like abortion is also a crime. So those who are promoting that discussion are violating the law,” Imbong said. 

The lawyer also lamented the involvement of the Department of Health and the Population Commission in the event’s steering committee. 

As government agencies, she said that its officials have the duty to obey and uphold the Constitution on the rights of the unborn. 

“But what happened? Are they therefore abetting the decriminalization of abortion?” added Imbong. 

The lawyer and her son, Atty. James Imbong, are set to argue for the issuance of a TRO. 

RH is population control, abortion 

Fr. Melvin Castro, executive secretary of the CBCP’s Episcopal Commission on Family and Life, also chided that the event is being held in the country. 

“We are deeply saddened that after a series of natural calamities that brought death and destruction to our people, such a conference will be hosted by our country,” Castro said. 

He also said that as the church pointed the terms reproductive health and sexual rights include access to surgical and medical abortion. 

“This conference proves the real agenda of RH is population control and abortion,” he added. 

Among the pro-abortion groups behind the conference include the Ford Foundation, Pathfinder International, and International Planned Parenthood Federation. (CBCPNews)

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