BREAKING NEWS: US Withdraws Part of Controversial Amendment to Global Agreement

The US delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women today withdrew part of a controversial amendment but has so far still refused to reaffirm the Platform of Action on Women’s Rights. The amendment would have stated that no new right to abortion was created through the women’s rights platform, which was first established at the UN Fourth World Conference on Women held in Beijing in 1995. However, the amendment still specifies that the platform “does not create any new international human rights.”

The Feminist Majority joined other women’s rights organizations in the US and abroad in urging the US to commit to reaffirming the UN Platform of Action, issuing a joint statement that read, “The continued U.S. refusal to join the global consensus affirming the Platform for Action is a betrayal of women worldwide.”

Calling the move a “step in the right direction,” June Zeitlin, executive director of the Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO), told the New York Times, “We hope they continue on this path without taking any more detours and join women around the world and the governments in unequivocally reaffirming the Beijing platform and withdrawing the amendment.”

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Reuters 3/2/05; Planetwire.com 3/3/05; NY Times 3/4/05

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