Malta takes stand on EU’s refusal to recognise position against abortion

Environment Minister Leo Brincat says EU ignored Malta’s position against abortion during drafting of communication on Sustainable Development Goals.

Minister for Sustainable Development Leo Brincat, meets with the French Minister Ségolène Royal.
Minister for Sustainable Development Leo Brincat, meets with the French Minister Ségolène Royal.

Environment Minister Leo Brincat has made Malta’s position against abortion clear during a meeting of the Council of Ministers.

The Council of Ministers today discussed a communication by the European Commission on proposals to address global poverty and sustainable development.

One of the Sustainable Development Goals includes Sexual and Reproduction Health and Rights. It however turns out that during the drafting of the communication, the European Union did not take into consideration Malta’s position against abortion.

“For the Sustainable Development Goals to be successful, the European Union must be united. However, it did not consider Malta’s position against abortion. Such attitude hinders the cooperation member states should enjoy,” Brincat told the Council of Ministers.

The Environment Minister insisted that such a communication should have been drafted once the Open Working Group finalised its work.

During his intervention, Brincat said the EU was insensitive towards Malta’s position, a position that the member state felt strongly about.

“Malta’s position against abortion is well known with the European Commission, the European External Action Service and the Member States.

“We have also strongly voiced our opposition in several meetings and informal meetings both at EU level and during the United Nation’s open working group,” Brincat said.

The minister said that the Commission’s communication would have otherwise been a positive outcome.

The newest working document for the Sustainable Development Goals was released on June 2 and it included the controversial term “reproductive rights”, which in other words means abortion.

Pro-abortion lobbyists argue that this should guarantee access to safe abortion.

The SDGs that are being negotiated at the UN are the future international development objectives that will be in effect from 2015 to 2030. The current development agenda is centered on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) established in 2000 and scheduled to end in 2015. In June of 2012, 192 countries held the UN Conference on Sustainable Development and produced an outcome document called “The Future We Want”, commonly referred to as Rio+20. This document sets out a vision for development that includes economic, social and environmental aspects.