Thursday, November 20, 2008

China: woman avoids abortion

Baptist Press reports that a woman who is six months pregnant will not undergo a forced abortion, despite being held for nearly a week in a Chinese hospital under threat of the procedure. Arzigul Tursun, a mother of two, was released Nov. 18 from a hospital in Xinjiang, the vast northwest region of the world's most populous country, according to Radio Free Asia (RFA). "I am all right and I am at home now," Tursun told RFA shortly after her release. The head of the local population control committee said Tursun "wasn't in good enough health to have an abortion." As a Uyghur Muslim, Tursun is permitted to have two children under China's coercive "one-child" program. Government officials, however, had decided to enforce the population-control policy on her third child. She is 26 weeks into her pregnancy. Tursun's deliverance from a coercive abortion came after two members of the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as the American ambassador to Beijing, urged Chinese officials to reverse course.

Comment: While it is clear that the excuse for allowing Arzigul Tursun's baby live comes from international pressure, it is a revealing tacit admission ( "wasn't in good enough health to have an abortion.") that an abortion procedure is harder on a woman's body than natural birth.