The European Center for Law and Justice (ECLJ) has announced that it will submit to the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), in accordance with Article 65 of the Rules of Procedure, a petition (here in French and English) on behalf of more than 185.000 European citizens. The Bureau of the Assembly shall examine its formal admissibility and decide to refer it to a Commission for further examination.
In this petition, the petitioners ask the Assembly to take a clear position on the rights of the fetus and of children who survive their (intended) abortions. Every year in Europe, children are born alive after an (attempted) abortion procedure after the 20th week of pregnancy. They are, in most cases, abandoned to die without care, left struggling for their lives sometimes for several hours, or they are killed by lethal injection or suffocation. These gruesome facts are attested by the official data and testimonies of midwives. One study published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology has concluded that at 23 weeks of pregnancy, the percentage of children surviving abortion is at 10%. It is established and recognized in European law (Directive 2010/63 / EU) that a human fetus is able to “sense and express pain, suffering and distress” before the third trimester of pregnancy.
This petition originates with a Written Question (No. 655) of Mr. Pintado to which the Committee of Ministers, “owing to a lack consensus, [has] not been able to adopt a reply” on the measures to be taken in order to “guarantee that foetuses who survive abortions are not deprived from the medical treatment that they are entitled to -as human persons born alive- according to the European Convention on Human Rights”.
This will be the first time that PACE will be addressed by such a broad citizens’ movement.