STRASBOURG, October 19, 2005 ( – The European Union’s Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adopted a resolution earlier this month titled Women and Religion in Europe, which recommends that countries “ensure that women are not subjected to religiously inspired policies and laws [such as] abortion law[s].”

Maintaining laws that protect the most innocent and helpless members of society – the unborn – in contrast to a so-called woman’s right to choose to kill their unborn children, PACE maintains, is a form of “intolerance and discrimination” aimed at women by what they decry as male-dominated religion – an obvious reference to Roman Catholicism, a faith with a male-dominated hierarchy and a prohibition against abortion.

The resolution, the brain-child of Swiss Group of the European People’s Party, Mme Rosmarie Zapfl-Helbling, also strongly condemned religions that support a “patriarchal culture which holds up the role of wife, mother and housewife as the ideal,” as another form of discrimination against women.

During heated debate on the resolution, the Catholic Church was further blamed for the transmission of sexually transmitted disease because of its prohibition against contraceptives. It might be therefore be speculated that Zapfl-Helbling’s belief is that if condoms were worn 24 hours per day like underwear, there would be no STDs regardless of the sexual proclivities of the wearer.

In another portrayal of intolerance displayed by Zapfl-Helbling and her PACE co-conspirators, the resolution states that governments should “ensure that the freedom of religion and the respect for culture and tradition are not accepted as a pretext to justify violations of women’s rights, including when underage girls are forced to submit to religious codes [where] their access to contraception is barred by their family or community.”

In related news, in a new bid to target European Union member states with pro-life constitutions, the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (RFSU), a radically pro-abortion group, sponsored an event titled Abortion – Making It a Right for All Women in the EU, in cooperation with 17 Members of European Parliament (MEPs) representing 12 different member countries. The event hosted women from Catholic European countries who contend that prohibition on abortion in their country is a violation of their human rights.

Read the PACE resolution:

To voice views:
  Parliamentary Assembly Council of Europe
  Avenue de l’Europe
  F-67075 Strasbourg Cedex
  Tel: +33/ 388 41 20 00 Fax: +33/ 388 41 27 81
  E-mail: [email protected]

Contact Zapfl-Helbling directly:
  Conseil national, Palais du Parlement, Berne 3003
  Tel: + 41 31 322 98 77; Fax: + 41 31 322 53 74