Letter to Maltese MEPS to Vote Against the Matic Report
Dear Member of the European Parliament,
We write to you on behalf of Life Network Foundation Malta, a registered Voluntary organisation, that works towards promoting the value of each and every human life.
As might be informed, on June 23rd, the European Parliament will vote on the so-called Matić report, a proposal from the Women’s Committee.
This report is a new edition of the Estrela report, which had in 2013, proposed abortion as a fundamental human right. The European Parliament rightly rejected the Report basically on the principle of subsidiarity since matters relating to abortion are left, according to the Treaties, in the exclusive hands and jurisdiction of the member states.
Now there is a new edition – the Matic report. This time the report, not only calls for a declaration of a so-called right to abortion as a human right; but there is also an urgent request to the member states to ensure that Pro-Life organizations shall no more be allowed to provide information and education, and to ensure that in all member states sex education be made compulsory already in primary schools, following the guidelines of the WHO.
The Matic report recommends State funding for abortion as well as an end to the possibility for medical staff to resort to conscientious objection concerning the termination of pregnancies.
Our main objections as a network of pro-life organizations are that:
- Abortions are expressly not part of the common European policy; they are the responsibility of the individual member states.
- The report therefore ignores the principle of subsidiarity, which considers in particular the moral values of the people of a country.
- Each country is entitled to discuss and decide for itself on how its values are shaped into laws – there are national parliaments for this. Moreover, in the case of Malta a Protocol was included in the Treaty of Accession that matters relating to abortion are to be decided by the Maltese people and no one else.
- Breaching the principle of subsidiarity on a matter where different views prevail, and where millions cherish the right to life of the unborn child, will fuel Euro-scepticism in the sense that the matter will be used as an example of the European institutions unnecessarily interfering with the decisions and activities of member states.
- The proposal to restrict freedom of conscience on such a delicate matter is a serious matter, which may create a precedent for other areas of activity where conscience is involved. An annulment of this right by EU diktat on such elementary issues leads to even more disenchantment with the EU and politics and may drive voters to the parties that openly articulate this disaffection.
- The reasoning of the report, according to which Pro Life organizations pose a threat to the right to life because they spread “false information” and pursue “nationalist goals”, is defamatory and discriminatory.
- The European Court stated in a decision of 18 October 2011 in Oliver Brüstle Greenpeace e.V that from the moment of conception, the embryo is a human being that must be protected – this is exactly the position taken by the Pro-Life organizations who advocate this protection.
- The Report thus lays hand on the right to freedom of expression, the right to freedom of conscience, the right to freedom of religion and, above all, the right to life for all people.
We therefore respectfully appeal to you to exercise your right to vote against the adoption of the Matic Report. In view of the fact that the vast majority of Maltese people are against abortion being treated as a fundamental human right, it is fit and proper that you express your disapproval and concern when the Report comes up for voting in the European Parliament.
We are at your disposal and available for any queries you might have or information you might request.
Dr. Miriam Sciberras BChD (Hons) MA Bioethics
Chairman | Life Network Foundation Malta