Saturday 12th March 2016 marked an important historical step for the defence of human life in Europe. An international new force for life and human dignity has been established under the name of “One of Us European Federation for Life and HumanDignity”, abbreviated as the “One of Us Federation”. This Federation is a non-profit apolitical and non-denominational organisation. The launching in Paris at the Salle Gaveau, included 1200 participants from the 28 European countries and 31 national organizations. There were participants from France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria, Rumania, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Portugal. At this launching, Malta was represented by Life Network Foundation Chairman Dr Miriam Sciberras, and International Life Network Secretary, Dr Mark Sciberras.
The President, Jaime Mayor Oreja ( former Interior Minister of Spain), opened the Forum by stressing that Europe’s citizens are keen to reclaim the human values of their founders: the respect of each and every human being from conception to natural death.
The Aims of the Federation are:
a. The unconditional recognition of the inherent, inalienable human dignity as source of human and civil rights and freedoms. Human dignity should be inviolable and protected by public authorities.
b. The development of a culture of life in Europe, through promoting and supporting activities that involve the defence of human life, especially at its most vulnerable stages of development ( conception and gestation, childhood, maternity, sickness, old age and end of life).
The topics discussed during the one day forum included the American Planned Parenthood Scandal and its consequences for Europe, the Threat or Reality of Euthanasia in Europe, Surrogate Motherhood, Eugenics and sale of Gametes.
The panel of distinguished speakers included Jean-Marie Le Mene ( President of the Jerome Lejeune Foundation), Katalin Novak ( Minister of Family Hungary), Alberto Ruiz Gallardon ( former Minister of Justice Spain), Jean-Frederic Poisson ( French MP), Miroslav Mikolasik ( MEP and Chairman of EPP Working Group on Bioethics and Human Dignity, Slovakia), Carlo Casini ( former MEP Italy), Gian-Luigi Gigli ( President of Movimento per la Vita Italy), Phillipe de Villiers ( former French Minister), Jan Figel ( former European Commissioner Slovakia) and Konrad Szymanski ( Secretary of State for European Affairs, Poland).
The panel of fiery enthusiastic pro-life speakers spoke of the challenges facing Europe today, and how, by joining forces and with a clear target we must fight for the defence of any and all human life.
The day concluded with the One of Us Award Ceremony. The first award was given to Pattaramon Chanbua, a mother of a baby born with Down syndrome who generated an international emotional outcry when her story was revealed in summer 2014. Baby Gammy was conceived together with his twin sister through an agreement of so called “surrogate motherhood. “However, as diagnosis revealed that Gammy had Down syndrome, the mother was threatened to abort as the Australian couple who contracted only wanted to keep the healthy sibling.
Dr Mark Sciberras
Life Network Malta