16-09-2016

Surrogacy alert: the Council of Europe will vote again


On September 21, the Council of Europe will debate again on a report and a draft resolution on Surrogacy. The danger is to endorse this practice in Europe.

This highly controversial new report is once again presented by Petra De Sutter, Belgian senator and gynecologist. This is a repeat performance for this rapporteur, who was accused to face a conflict of interest: she herself is involved in surrogacy practices in her professional activity and her connections with an Indian Clinic have also been unveiled. Her first report which was rejected last March 15, was intended to set forth European guidelines for surrogacy; in other words to legitimize this practice in contradiction to Human Rights and human dignity.

After the examination of a new report was suspended last June, it was finally scheduled for September 21, 2016, and will be held in Paris, where exceptionally, the Social Affairs Committee will meet in private proceedings.

Caroline Roux, VITA International’s director states: « We are extremely concerned about the presentation of this « modified » report which is kept completely secret, and reserved for parliament committee members only. Furthermore it has been decided that, exceptionally, it will be debated in private proceedings. The rapporteur, gynecologist, Petra De Sutter, herself practices surrogacy and makes a “subtle” distinction between a surrogacy which would be acceptable if strictly controlled, and a so-called commercial surrogacy which she condemns. Commercial surrogacy, whether it is controlled or not, is a form of mistreatment to children that can never be repaired, and a modern slavery for women by exploiting their bodies. Surrogacy is definitely a step backwards against women’s rights and the best interest of the child. Alliance VITA is confronted to couples who experience infertility and sterility. We are aware of their suffering and extremely sensitive to this difficult ordeal. But as a guarantor of Human Rights, the Council of Europe cannot endorse surrogacy since this method of procreation constitutes a violation of fundamental human rights and has serious consequences for women and children. We request for the elected representatives of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, and especially the French parliamentarians, to reject this text and to actively work toward a universal ban on surrogacy, as promised by the French Prime Minister, Manual Valls.

Alliance VITA is a member of No Maternity Traffic and actively supports the call for demonstration on Wednesday September 21 in Paris, from 8:15 to 9:15 am in front of the Council of Europe, 55 Ave. Kléber 75016 Paris. The international collective group No Maternity Traffic officially presented to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe a petition which was found receivable by the Council, with more than 100,000 signatures from European citizens calling for a universal ban on all forms of surrogacy.


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