Commenting on Ivan Padovani’s article ‘The puerile demand to kill’ (July 28), Kurt Waschnig said that the “The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) informed the UNin 2013 about Malta’s blanketban on abortion... and that there cannot be any doubt that this ban put women at risk of ‘torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment’.”

He further added: “There are no medical exceptions to allow abortion in Malta and that shows Malta was also failing to ensure women’s right to life.” He lauded the recommendations of the ICJ.

He also informed readers that “The UN’s Universal Periodic Review of the human rights record of all member states is available on the net.”

On the net there is also a very clear declaration by Minister Helena Dalli, on behalf of the government, found in paragraph 25 of the report on the 19th meeting of the working group on the Universal Periodic Review on Malta of the UN General Assembly, held on November 1, 2013 in Geneva.

The Malta delegation “reiterated the government’s belief in the need to protect the right to life, including that of the unborn child. It expressed the view that, as human life begins at conception, the termination of pregnancy through procedures of induced abortion at any stage of gestation was an infringement of this right. Malta, therefore, could not recognise abortion or any other form of termination of pregnancy as a legitimate measure of family planning”.

To Waschnig’s assertion that “…Malta must decriminalise abortion and ensure women’s access to safe abortions when their life or health may be at risk”, Ms Dalli declares, in the same UN report, that “Where the life of a mother (in Malta) was at risk,a medical intervention to save her life, even if that could result in the death of the child, wasnot precluded”.

The PN has committed itself “to work for the fundamental right to life... from conceptionto natural death”. AD is also against abortion.

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