Media Release: Tuesday, 10 March, 2009

Christians are dismayed that the Rudd Government believes abortion should take priority over proper birthing facilities for women in poor countries, the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) said today.

ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said the Government had caved in to proabortion advocates intent on imposing their agenda and ideology at any cost and, in doing so, had ignored the views of a great many Christians who have tirelessly given money to overseas aid and been among the strongest supporters of the Millennium Development Goals.

“This will be the first time in Australia’s history that our aid dollars are used to kill unborn children overseas,” Mr Wallace said. “However this is packaged it will result in aid money being used for an intent which is opposite to that of many of its most passionate advocates.”

Mr Wallace said there had been no requests from overseas countries for the ban to be overturned and that providing birthing clinics and trained midwives would be a superior way to address maternal health concerns.

“In late 2007, for the first time in Australia’s history, foreign aid funding became an election issue. This was largely as a result of a push for increased aid funding from churches and Christian organisations.”

“The great majority of Christians who pushed for this increased aid will be justly appalled to think that some of those aid dollars will now be re-directed towards ending the life of unborn children in poor countries.”

Mr Wallace said that the concern felt by Christians on this issue was demonstrated by the fact that they had sent more than 10,000 emails to Federal politicians as part of the ACL’s ‘Aid not abortion’ campaign.

Media Contact: Glynis Quinlan