JOHANNESBURG, September 5, 2002 ( – The Costa Rican newspaper “Al Dia” reports that Costa Rican President Abel Pacheco was angered by a confrontation he had with United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson.  The paper reports that the President himself confirmed that Robinson visited him at his hotel demanding he support objectionable language in the Earth Summit document.  “She wanted Costa Rica to sign an amendment that some of us believe would be an opening for abortion. The text does not mention it specifically, but it speaks about guaranteeing the right to health for women all over the world, with which I agree.  But it seems that in prior meetings it had been determined that one of the health rights of women was abortion, and that I cannot support” explained Pacheco   Pacheco was astonished, and incensed with Robinson’s reaction to his refusal to support the abortion language.  She stormed out of the meeting “very upset” reports the paper.  “I do not see how can she think that I am President of a Banana Republic, and believe that she is going to impose upon us, so that Costa Rica will have to do whatever she thinks it is right,” stated the President emphatically.  “I told her that Costa Rica, in its Constitution, is a Catholic country, that I am Catholic, and as a doctor I have taken an oath to defend life above everything, and if that was going to be an opening to legalize abortion, I could not agree with it, and Costa Rica would not support it.”  The President recognized that “in all certainty, from now on, the relationships of our country with the High Commissioner will be very bad”, but he stated that he felt calm, because, just after the incident he checked with the head of the Vatican delegation, Archbishop Renato Martino, who was happy that Costa Rica had taken the position supported by the Holy Father.”  (Reference: Al Dia, Page 8, Wednesday September 4th 2002 Pablo Gueren and Sylvia Alvarado)  (with files from Dan Zeidler)