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Abortion activists ignore rights of child

Fionola Meredith (Comment, February 10) again challenges our law on abortion. She thinks that, because it was enacted in the 19th century, it is obsolete.

The soundness of an Act is not defined by its date. Supporters of change should not assume that abortion is a simple solution to a problem. For example, the Belfast Telegraph recently featured a case where a 13-year-old rape victim was rushed to England to have her baby aborted. She suffered an underlying depression - even after marriage and motherhood - until helped by Christian counselling.

Fionola Meredith refers to women who go to England for an abortion in the extreme cases of fatal foetal abnormality or sex crime. These can only be a small minority of the numbers who go. The rest seem to go to have their child killed.

The 1967 Abortion Act was created to deal with what was anticipated to be a small number of problem cases. It proved that, where there is a weak fence, it will soon be trampled over.

The Declaration of Geneva (1948) stated: "I will maintain the utmost respect for human life from the time of conception. Even under threat, I will not use my medical knowledge contrary to the laws of humanity."

In England, this bias towards preserving the life of the unborn child has been replaced with a culture of expendability, where its death is only a matter of choice.

I presume that by "full reproductive rights", Fionola means the right to abort at will and not as a last resort. She affords no rights to the child.

DONALD GALE

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