Forced Abortion Still Part of China’s Population Control Regime says US Human Rights Report

Tue Mar 1, 2005 - 12:15 pm EST

WASHINGTON, March 1, 2005 ( – On February 28, 2005, the US State Department released its 2004 Human Rights Report. The report entitled “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices” is submitted to Congress by the Department of State in compliance with laws requiring the department to submit “a full and complete report regarding the status of internationally recognized human rights . . . in countries that receive (US) assistance.” 

Regarding China, the report notes that “Violence against women, including imposition of a coercive birth limitation policy that resulted in instances of forced abortion and forced sterilization, continued to be a problem, as did prostitution.” The report outlines in detail the barbaric population control practices employed by the Chinese government. 

“Under the country’s family planning law and policies,” said the report, “citizens in 6 of the country’s 31 provinces still were required to apply for government permission before having a first child, and the Government continued to restrict the number of births.” 

The recently bolstered population control law and its broad base of population control enforcement are evident. 

“The Population and Family Planning Law, the country’s first formal law on the subject, entered into force in 2002. The National Population and Family Planning Commission (NPFPC) enforces the law and formulates and implements policies with assistance from the China Family Planning Association, which had 1 million branches nationwide,” says the report. 

Restrictions on freedom are blatant. “The law grants married couples the right to have one child and allows eligible couples to apply for permission to have a second child if they meet conditions stipulated in local and provincial regulations. Many provincial regulations require women to wait 4 years or more after their first birth before making such an application.” 

Regarding forced abortion, the report notes that “Seven provinces—Anhui, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Hubei, Hunan, Jilin, and Ningxia—require “termination of pregnancy” if the pregnancy violates provincial family planning regulations.” 

Moreover, other forms of coercion also lead to coerced abortion and sterilization. 

“The law requires couples who have an unapproved child to pay a ‘social compensation fee,’ which sometimes reached 10 times a person’s annual income, and grants preferential treatment to couples who abide by the birth limits,” says the report. “Officials often strongly encouraged women with multiple children to undergo sterilization, such as tubal ligation, according to multiple reports.”

“Psychological and economic pressure were very common; during unauthorized pregnancies, women sometimes were visited by birth planning workers who used threats, including that of social compensation fees, to pressure women to terminate their pregnancies,” says the report. 

“Additional disciplinary measures against those who violated the child limit policy by having an unapproved child or helping another to do so included job loss or demotion, loss of promotion opportunity, expulsion from the Party (membership in which was an unofficial requirement for certain jobs), and other administrative punishments, including, in some cases, the destruction of property.” 

See the full State Department report.

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