Maternal health includes family planning, access to abortion: Clinton

Posted on March 30, 2010  |  Related Issues: Comprehensive Sexual and Reproductive Health, Family Planning, U.S. Foreign Policy & Funding

From Canwest News Service March 30, 2010 GATINEAU, Que. -- Any discussions about maternal health should address issues of family planning and abortions, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Tuesday. Ms. Clinton made the comments during a news conference in Gatineau where G8 foreign ministers met this week.
The controversial issue became a hot topic earlier this month when Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon suggested the government's foreign initiative on maternal health would steer clear of such contentious topics.

Widespread backlash forced the government to backpedal on the matter.
Although abortion and contraception remains an even more polarizing debate in the U.S., Ms. Clinton didn't mince words.

"Reproductive health includes contraception and family planning and access to legal safe abortions," she said during a news conference.
"If we are concerned about abortion, then women should have access to family planning.

That said, Ms. Clinton acknowledged the issue is a touchy one and suggested governments should stay out of it.

She cited China's "abhorrent" one child policy that often resulted in forced abortions as an example of why.

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