Change the Vaticanís status within the UN!
Press Statement from Riksförbundet för Sexuell Upplysning (RFSU)/Swedish Association for Sex Education
Stockholm, April 25, 1999

As the war in Kosovo continues the number of reported cases of rape of women is increasing. Rape is a profound violation of the women victims and their husbands. Apart from the psychological injuries rape can also result in unwanted pregnancy. The UNís population Fund, UNFPA, has despatched, in an attempt to reduce this, emergency contraception as well as medical equipment for safe deliveries.

The Vatican State, (which like Switzerland) enjoys observer status within the UN, has strongly protested against the shipment of emergency contraception to Kosovo claiming that it extinguishes lives.

The RFSU congress is appalled by the Vaticanís blatant nonchalance towards human suffering. The opposition to a pill that is used even before the initiation of the pregnancy is deeply inhuman, especially under the circumstances in Kosovo today.

The Vatican, thanks to its status as observer, has a unique opportunity to further its own political and religious interests in and via the UN. The Kosovo example is only one amongst many others. It is time for the Vatican to pursue its policies in the UN under the same conditions as other religious and voluntary organisations.

RFSU urges the government to actively support the existing appeals for the reappraisal of the Vaticanís position within the UN.