Amnesty International, a human rights organization that used to be abortion neutral, is now using the problem of maternal mortality to advocate for abortion. In a new report, ostensibly on medical care for maternal health, Amnesty calls on governments to repeal abortion laws and conscience protection for medical workers who may object. They also call for public health systems to train and equip health care providers to perform abortions.
Amnesty’s “Maternal Health is a Human Right” campaign focuses attention on four countries: Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Peru, and the United States. Amnesty argues that maternal mortality will decrease if it is treated as a human rights issue, if costs to health care are covered by governments, and if a right for women to control their reproductive and sex lives is established.
According to its official position, “Amnesty International believes that where women’s access to safe and legal abortion services and information is restricted, their fundamental human rights may be at grave risk.”
At the time Amnesty changed its position, many long-time Catholic supports left the group and at least one Vatican Cardinal called upon Catholics no longer to support the group. In the intervening years Amnesty has become an aggressive public campaigner for a right to abortion and even makes the claim that abortion is a human right in international law.