The Bush administration said yesterday that it would withdraw $34 million in international family planning funds from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), arguing that the organization supports programs in China that force women to have abortions, in direct violation of U.S. law. U.N. officials denied promoting abortions in China (or anywhere else, for that matter), saying that on the contrary, their work has reduced the number of abortions in the country by providing education and health services to poor woman. “Women and children will die because of this decision,” said Thoraya Obaid, executive director of UNFPA. In May, a White House fact-finding team agreed with UNFPA’s assessment of its work, finding “no evidence” that the organization promoted forced abortions or sterilizations. But now the administration has reversed course, drawing praise from abortion opponents and raising the ire of family planning advocates.
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