Opinion: Time to put abortion top of the SRHR agenda
By Anu Kumar
09 December 2019
Just a couple of weeks ago, I attended the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25, which marked the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development held in Cairo in 1994. The trip was particularly meaningful to me, having been at the Cairo meeting where 179 governments made women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights a priority goal of global development.
The anti-rights opposition movement called it “the abortion summit,” but in truth, it was far from it. In my opinion, that’s a shame, because we — the global health, sexual and reproductive health, and development fields — need an abortion summit.
Coca-Cola and quacks
How Kenya's restrictive abortion laws are fuelling infanticide
Kenya is in the grip of an infanticide crisis – driven by poverty, unwanted pregnancies and muddled abortions laws. Adrian Blomfield discovers the deadly consequences of restricting reproductive rights. Pictures by Simon Townsley
November 25, 2019
On the streets of Nairobi, out of official earshot, nurses say there are different ways of killing unwanted babies.
Some young mothers feed them Coca-Cola instead of breast milk to make their organs collapse. Ginger beer is said to work just as well. Hundreds, perhaps thousands of others, are left to die in pit-latrines, rivers and rubbish dumps.
Or there is always the option of getting someone else to do the deed. Quacks on the back streets of urban slums are often only too willing to end a late-term pregnancy by inducing a living infant and then finishing it off with a blow to the head.
Why doctors should tell teens about contraceptives
Nov 23, 2019
Failure by health care personnel to discuss contraception with young people who are just about to start engaging in sexual activity potentially increases unwanted pregnancies and abortions.
This is according to a report on young voices about future scenarios and contraception released in Nairobi on Tuesday.
International Conference on Population & Development+25
Nairobi, Kenya, 12-13-14 November 2019
Press Release: 22 November 2019
What was it about: some history
This conference has taken place every five years, beginning in 1994. At each follow-up meeting, the overarching purpose has been to measure progress (and the lack of progress) in implementing the 1994 Programme of Action, which was agreed by acclamation by the representatives of 179 countries, and the follow-up actions added at subsequent conferences. An excellent summary of the aims, goals and history of the conference can be found here and a 20th anniversary edition of the Programme of Action can be found here along with a global report on progress published in 2014.
In 1994, UNFPA, the conference convenor, described the Programme of Action as: “a bold new vision about the relationships between population, development and individual well-being… remarkable in its recognition that [sexual and] reproductive health and reproductive rights, as well as women's empowerment and gender equality, are cornerstones of population and development programmes. The Consensus is rooted in principles of human rights and respect for national sovereignty and various religious and cultural backgrounds.”
What Have We Delivered for the World’s Women and Girls Since 1994?
by Latanya Mapp Frett
End poverty. End patriarchy. Could it be that these two goals are more intimately linked than ever before? Last week marked a rubber-hits-the-road moment for those who are interested in doing both.
Government leaders, politicians and civil society activists gathered from November 12 to 14 in Nairobi, Kenya for a United Nations Summit on population and development. I joined those delegates to follow up on commitments made 25 years ago at the original International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD)—and to continue to advocate for grassroots women’s voices to be not only present but fully heeded in these global conversations, processes and policies that will help determine our futures.
Scale up sexuality education to address maternal hitches
16th Nov 2019
Exaggeration is the lazy tool of advocates attached to a cause. With it, dies truth and the possibility of common ground. This week’s International Conference on Population and Development attracted its share of half-truths, manipulated facts and lies. What is its significance for the next decade?
Seven thousand delegates attended this week’s conference to reflect how far the world has changed since the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo, 25 years ago. Rallied by the United Nations Population Fund, 179 governments placed women’s empowerment at the centre of poverty reduction and population control strategies for the first time. Women must have the right to choose the number and timing of their children was part of the quantum leap achieved in 1994. Rather than states controlling women’s fertility, signatories committed to providing universal education, broadening the range of reproductive and sexual health services and reducing infant and maternal mortality and female genital mutilation (FGM).
US isolated at ‘failed’ anti-abortion summit in Nairobi
Conservative protests against global development conference in Kenya fail to draw crowds, or derail commitments.
Nandini Archer, Claire Provost, Mary Fitzgerald
15 November 2019
US representatives found themselves isolated at a “failed” counter-summit, organised by religious conservative groups, to protest against the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD25) in Nairobi this week.
More than 9,500 people from 170 countries attended the three-day global summit, queuing for hours to get in on the opening day. Five people were rushed to hospital after fainting in the packed lines of delegates.
What is comprehensive sexuality education? A life saver.
14 November 2019
NAIROBI, Kenya – “If I had known about safe sex in my teens, my life would never have turned out this way,” said 21-year-old Sithu* from Myanmar. He contracted HIV two years ago, despite being intimate only twice with his partner at the time.
Like millions of young people around the world, Sithu had never received any kind of comprehensive sexuality education, in school or elsewhere.
Tempers flare over ‘abortion agenda’ at reproductive health summit
By PAULINE KAIRU
Nov 14, 2019
Disagreements continued to rock the controversy-ridden International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD25) forum in Nairobi Thursday.
This is after the United States and the European Union openly clashed over what the former claimed was a hidden pro-choice agenda, setting the stage for a global showdown over issues such as abortion and sex education for teenagers.
The American anti-abortion movement is reverberating abroad
By Annalisa Merelli in Nairobi, Kenya
November 14, 2019
25 years ago, UN member states met in Cairo for a groundbreaking summit: the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD). It was a massive meeting, attended by some 20,000 government representatives, activists and nonprofits.
Their goal was to make international commitments to improve reproductive rights and health around the world. They ultimately pledged to increase access to education for women, reduce maternal, infant and child mortality, and ensure access to family planning methods and reproductive health for all. Among those in attendance was then US president Bill Clinton. The US had emerged as a leader in promoting global reproductive rights. It was an exciting time. The conference felt like a landmark meeting. It was history in the making.