Cherie Blair is a firm believer and champion of women’s rights. She strongly believes women have a choice whether to bear children or not through contraception.

The mother of four, barrister, Queen’s Counsel, and wife of former Prime Minister Tony Blair, said she felt “rather sad” when she heard Pope Benedict XVI say that condoms “increase the problem” of AIDS during his recent visit to Africa, as well as with the way it was reported.

“I think we do have to understand that there is concern about promiscuity. But there’s also a real concern about saving lives and I absolutely believe, and scientific evidence shows, that condoms do save lives. Therefore, when there’s a choice between endangering and not endangering life, we should always choose life,” she stresses in an interview with Ariadne Massa.

Mrs Blair has never attempted to hide her views on contraception and her reference to “contraceptive equipment” in her book was quickly pounced upon.

She recounts how Leo was conceived because she had decided to leave this ‘equipment’ behind during the couple’s visit to Balmoral, the Queen’s residence in Scotland, after a diligent courtier had embarrassingly unpacked her overnight bag during the previous visit.

Mrs Blair has never revealed what this equipment could possibly be, and as she sits back into the sofa in the Phoenicia Hotel’s lounge, her eyes twinkle teasingly.

Watch excerpts of the interview above. Read the entire interview in today’s edition of The Sunday Times.

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