Trump Halts US Funding of United Nations Population Fund

Donald Trump Defunds Global Maternal Health Organization

As Devex reported yesterday, while the UNFPA has a program in China, it does not do work that involves abortions, or sterilizations, let alone procedures that are not voluntary.

The move comes as a follow up to President Trump's decision, three days after his inauguration, to restore Reagan-era policy that denies federal funding to abortion-supporting or promoting groups.

"UNFPA, to this day, continues to operate in China in collaboration with the state-run family planning program".

The US decision to cut funding to the UN Population Fund is based on an inaccurate perception and could be devastating for the health of women and girls worldwide, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Tuesday.

At the time, as the USA government announced it had pulled $34m of funds, the UNFPA said the lost funding would have prevented 2 million unwanted pregnancies and the deaths of 77,000 children. China's oppressive population control policy, recently changed to a two-child limit, has led to forced and coerced abortions up through nine months of pregnancy, as well as forced and coerced sterilizations.

The Trump administration said Monday it was ending funding to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), long a target of conservatives over concerns that its work in China abets the communist authorities' controversial population limitation programs.

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According to the Guardian, the state department explained in a letter that it was halting the country's funds because UNFPA "supports, or participates in the management of, a program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization". "Looking back, I feel a great sense of pride for the Chinese Government and people for their support to UNFPA and to me, personally, I also feel proud that UNFPA made the wise decision to resist external pressures and continued its fruitful cooperation with China", she said. President George W. Bush had also defunded the UNFPA, from 2002 to 2008, arguing that its presence in China constituted participation in the country's "one-child" family planning policy.

The Department of State referred to the presidential directive from January and a provision called the "Kemp-Kasten Amendment" in its statement on Monday.

The BBC's Nada Tawfik in NY reports that the UN Population Fund has often been the target of conservative Republican administrations.

Brian Dixon, vice president of government relations and media for the Population Connection Action Fund, a reproductive health organization, added: 'The signals here are clear, and they're not in support of.the human rights of women, or any other vulnerable people'. Accordingly UNFPA spends a majority of its funds on promoting abortions and contraceptives.

In its statement, the State Department referred to a presidential directive signed by Trump in January, which banned USA funding for any global organizations providing abortion services or advice.

China introduced its "one-child" policy in 1979, restricting couples to one child only, with some exceptions - for example some rurally-based or ethnic minority couples were allowed a second child if their firstborn was a girl. That makes it pretty clear how Trump defunding the UN Population Fund will affect families.

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