Архив

The UN's role in international population policy, reproductive and sexual health, and reproductive rights: evaluation of declining birthrates
Dr. Farooq Hassan * — Barrister at Law, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court Pakistan, (QC), Attorney at Law, (US) Special UN Ambassador for Family, Professor (Harvard)

Synopsis of the plenary address presented at the Moscow Demographic Summit (June, 2011)

The work of the United Nations’ evolving role in population and development, with a specific focus on the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has had effective repercussions throughout the world. Some protagonists consider that this role has not been overtly helpful to the cause of the traditional family.

Others, however, give a fundamentally different view of this matter. The honorable organizers of this International Congress clearly fall in the former category. The latter is, however, supported by formidable scholars and the current UN practices and policies of many important states are also clearly supportive of this perspective.

We have gathered here for this truly memorable mega-event in Moscow to celebrate the most cherished of our truly cosmopolitan institutions, the traditional Family by discussing in this Demographic Summit: “Family and the Future of Humankind.”

Such is the natural and undeniable force of the normative awareness of this phenomenon that I classify it as simply amongst the most pious and timely aspirations that mankind is currently actually experiencing.

The influence of various significant international developments pivoting around UN decisions & movements and articulations of world statesmen on the theme of declining birthrates internationally has evidently produced accumulatively tremendous transnational impact. Many of the policies that have resulted as a consequence of this phenomenon are basically directed towards the developing nations; however some impact is clearly discernable on the policies of developed states and nations as well.

Many of these issues are most significant for the advanced nations of this world, I am, therefore directing my articulations towards the theme of this conference to focus primarily to find out why these effects have had such a telling impact on the policies of several countries which are notably in Europe.

If there is a single country in the world which ought to know the underlying dangers about population decline, it is Russia. With a birth rate of about 1.2 and a decline of 6 million people over the past 20 years, Russia seems to be in considerable difficulty.

As Prime Minister Vladimir Putin puts it,

“Without exaggeration, the central problem of contemporary Russia is demography, strengthening the family, [and] increasing the birth rate.”

May be that is the major reason for holding the first international demographic summit meeting in Moscow, on June 29 and 30. According to the organizers, the World Congress of Families, it is the first time an international pro-life and pro-family event of this scale will take place in Russia. More than 1,000 participants are expected, including 300 foreigners, including top demography and family researchers, scientists and activists, and politicians.

In Russia, demographic decline is particularly evident, but throughout Europe, East and West, countries are not reproducing themselves as desired by demographers. The conference will cover a number of fascinating topics, including culturally induced desire for smaller families, voluntary childlessness, low birthrates and economic decline, problems of an aging society and alcoholism’s negative effects on demography.

Over the years I have followed this significant international movement closely. At the risk of some embarrassment, I have to bring it your kind notice of my own humble but sincere efforts manifested in numerous addresses and written interviews on this subject of divergent views as is clearly stressed at diverse places at the international levels and bears eloquent testimony to keeping as balanced a view as possible in this controversy.

This watchful brief of mine has been pursued by me as a delegate several times to the UN GA in the decade of the nineties, as a professor of law and international affairs at Harvard, as a technocrat member of the civilian cabinets in Pakistan (as an Advisor to four different Prime Ministers of my native country of Pakistan on Law & Foreign Policy), and more recently in this decade as an expert in the field of family studies. Because of this background and consistent work on Family internationally, I was appointed in 2003 to work as a Special UN Ambassador for Family.

I have coming from an Islamic country written enormously on various aspects of this subjects that you are now dealing with; indeed, I am privileged to say that some of my avocations on behalf of Women within the fold of traditional Family in such cultures are widely hailed even by Western commentators.

Rev. J. Butler, for instance, in a recent book on the foreign policies of right wing Western and Christian governments and institutions considered me, I say so with utmost humility, as the foremost reformist of the Muslim world. [1]

When I visited India several times, likewise my liberal views persuaded my hosting intellectuals to refer to my views as reminiscent of John Rawls. [2]

I therefore approach to-days debate with an open mind and not necessarily governed by the cliches that often permeate these deliberations. But with my “liberal” approaches one hast keep in a proper perspective the aims and objectives of the Demographic Summit at the Russian State Sociological University in Moscow to which a brief introductory comment is now necessary.

 

To begin with let me say that I am really glad to note that this memorable mile stone is expected to be supported by the Russian Government and the Russian Orthodox Church, besides pro-Family and pro- Life scholars and NGOs. I am especially interested in your esteemed conference since it being held on subject on which I have presented major addresses in the past. Governments do not necessarily support such initiatives, so the stand of the Russian authorities is commendable and indeed most welcome.

I feel privileged to tell you that I am internationally amongst pioneer speakers on this theme and on the topic of Demographic Winter when I delivered the opening Plenary Address at the Warsaw Conference of the World Congress of Families in 2007. My address is available on the internet and in the WCF net postings. From 2005 to 2007, I presented several addresses on this theme as well on diverse important issues of this subject in several seminars in Europe. [3]

However, the emphasis of my addresses analyzed, from what is now being canvassed in this present conference, clearly changed. Then it was simply the echo of my feelings, felt particularly in Europe, that perhaps on account of policies of international agencies, their population levels were somehow checked.

But now it is being argued that the problem of declining birthrates is universal in nature. I am afraid, that is not quite factually true since except for Europe, this phenomenon is simply not present on worldwide basis.

Low domestic birth rates and rising immigration from the former Soviet republics have produced an explosive growth in Russia’s Muslim community. At the same time Russia’s overall population is in crisis. Short life spans and low birth rates among ethnic Russians mean the population is declining by 700,000 people a year. The return of long-denied religious freedoms in Russia has seen Islam flourish in that country.

As a result, many ethnic Russians fear their country is losing its national identity. There are around 25 million Muslims in Russia today, a rise of 40 per cent since 1989. By 2020, with the continued growth rate, Muslims will account for one-fifth of the entire population.

Immigration

The numbers of immigrants continue to grow in Europe, particularly in the Russian Federation, fed by immigration from largely Muslim, former Soviet republics in the North Caucasus and Central Asia. Islamic leaders have said that Russia is good for Muslim immigrants, keen to work and build on their growing community, and they discount the rise of hostile nationalist sentiment at home. Such rapid increase in the numbers of such immigrant groups has produced a natural backlash from local nationalistic groups.

There is similar underlying sympathy for the protagonists of the anti-immigrant movements in Western Europe, particularity in France, where such phenomena have caused serious political and even cultural debates. [4]

It has indeed produced some policies relating to such things as the dress that Muslims, particularly women wear, in their own environment being actually banned while in France [5].

As such the call for increasing birthrates in Europe has some historical and cultural prejudices as well; they need to be kept in mind while surveying this topic. The current world idea and clamor at the level of the UN is actually a product essentially of the thought and culture of North American and European countries.

Some Russians, like perhaps the nationalist elements in France, are thus afraid of becoming a minority in their own country. But I think such fears are exaggerated at best, and not really germane to the real factors that have resulted in the high significance of this topic.

The raison d’etre of the UN movement to encourage decrease in birthrates is primarily directed at population controls which is a phenomenon favored by many in the developing world. I have already commented on this matter in the policies of, for instance, Muslim states as well when writing my report as the Rapporteur of the UN regional conference on “right of choice” amongst women, which is fundamentally an acronym for birth control. [6]

I have not seen any conspiracy behind such a move which in any case is directed primarily vis-a-vis the countries categorized as “developing” in economic terms. So the matter of declining birthrates in Europe is matter of concern, no doubt. However, it is not of world-wide proportions and has its roots in socio-cultural history of the European countries and nothing ostensibly to do with the UN.

That it is a phenomenon of restricted application as seen by this fact alone that countries such as China, India, Bangladesh and Pakistan are having hundreds of millions of populations, and have happily adopted restricted policies towards the notion of large families; these countries are otherwise not really considered as being adversely impacted on philosophical grounds by the mere fact that governments have openly attempted to curtail the very existence of larger family units. Indeed, China, the world’ new undisputed economic powerhouse, has had in place for decades the official policy of one child per family.

Even in my Warsaw address I had pointed this fact that Western NGOs, that form the backbone of the current movements towards large family in the traditional sense are really only concerned about the Western countries; they cannot be said, in all candor, to be worried at all about the fate of the third world nations in this respect.

I know that leading NGO which is now known for sending periodic newsletters about the pending developments in this area simply backed out of its commitment with me to fund my own work for undertaking for the reporting of two regional UN conferences held in Islamabad on family relate topics in 2005. [7]

Thus we have to be really honestly consistent in a philosophical sense to gauge the merit of this debate concerning declining birthrate and its presumed or intended consequences.

Accordingly, to be fair, we must face the simple fact that there has been great amount of necessary academic work that has been undertaken by those institutions of the UN that are now under international agreements to bring about an improvement in the economic well being of the developing countries in this respect.

To understand the difficulty that lies ahead for the pro-family protagonists in this respect, we have to mention the formidable research work undertaken in this connection by instance, inter alia, the Center for Global Development (CGD).

CDG’s Rachel Nugent, for example, co-chaired the 2010 working group on this very subject with my esteemed colleague, Professor David Bloom from Harvard University’s School of Public Health, and Dr. Jotham Musinguzi, head of the Africa Regional Office of Partners in Population and Development.

Members of the working group were invited to join in a personal capacity and on a voluntary basis and included population, development and reproductive health and rights experts from all regions of the world, policymakers, filmmakers, fund givers, academics and advocates.

The results of this working group provide a substantial body of literature that counters this world wide supposed disastrous affects of this phenomenon of birth decline. It would be naive to just ignore such research which is incidentally supported by many Third world developing nations of the world, such as China, India, and several Muslim countries as Pakistan.

Therefore what really is crucial in comprehending the adverse-result formulae of this decline in birthrates is to see if there has been a dilution of the quantum of the philosophical or spiritual message regarding family in the traditional sense because of these UN devised modalities.

Changing demographic context

Let me at the outset, state some preliminary thoughts which are well documented.

There is no hyperbole in emphasizing that since population dynamics are more predictable than most trends, it is safe to conclude that the next twenty years will bring:

  • continued fertility decline;
  • greater longevity;
  • more concentrated human settlement.

These and other — less predictable — events and conditions form the context for UN future agenda as reflected, inter alia, by the work of UNFPA. Attention remains on the population clock as it "ticks toward 7 billion global human populations, but the face of the clock is a diverse one.” [8]

It is also an established fact that the countries of high-fertility are largely concentrated in sub-Saharan Africa and in South and South East Asia, while low- and dropping fertility conditions are spreading from Western Europe to many developing regions of the world.

Figure 1 shows the regional average fertility rates over the past 40 years to illustrate the vast changes that have taken place already, as well as the significant differences remaining.

Figure 1.
Trends in Fertility across Regions of the World

Notes:
(i) Countries were classified into regions based on the World Bank Classification system that is outlined in the World Development Indicators Database, 2009;
(ii) Total fertility rate represents the number of children that would be born to a woman if she were to live to the end of her childbearing years and bear children in accordance with prevailing age-specific fertility rates. [9]

Population “policy” needs at the country level depend upon its cultural and historical background. However scientifically speaking, in economic planning of countries long term interests and policies, such needs vary in the short-term with a continuing imperative to focus attention on high-fertility, high-mortality countries and populations through an emphasis on family planning and maternal health.

In the medium-term, the global imperative may shift such priorities towards a greater country need for guidance from the international agencies such as the UN, on managing demographic transitions, including in-house expertise as well as support for local capacity-building in demography and statistics.

UN's goals and priorities

Let me articulate very briefly the major excising international agreements and decisions which are of binding legal nature and which mandate clearly the current policies of the UN in this context. In comprehending the more traditional family conceptions lost in such international legal texts of highest authority formulations, it is futile now to protest against such implementation which is required to be undertaken by the countries of the world pursuant to such mandates.

The most important milestone for UN is the 2014 target date of the Program of Action that was produced at the 1994 Cairo International Conference on Population and Development. It is not yet clear what will follow although different models exist at the UN, including agreement on a modified agenda or a continuation, such as the Alma Ata Declaration of “Health for All.”

The second development milestone is the termination of the Millennium Development Goals in 2015. Multiple processes are now underway to define the next incarnation of the MDGs. The third milestone is the 15-year anniversary of the Beijing Platform of Action (1995–2015) which was set at the Fourth World Conference on Women. The decisions made in Beijing do not expire, but there could be an anniversary review that could address UN future responsibilities related to gender.

The creation in 2009 of the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) will by necessity force a review of UNFPA’s role and overlap with the new agency. A swift and clear division of duties and arrangements for on-going collaboration is crucial to the success of both agencies.

With its clear responsibility for pursuing the Cairo agenda, UN agencies such as UNFPA must both steer and reflect the will of the population community to achieve those objectives if it is to build and maintain its leadership place The international population community is a diverse community that includes some powerful opposing voices, but also strong networks of common interests, both organizationally and substantively.

Importantly there are institutions for this UN thesis: but there also exist a contrary perspective that speaks not merely against this thesis based on essentially economic development, but on history and culture of mankind. It includes public and private sector health and service providers, donors and funds givers, academics and research NGOs, advocacy and activist organizations. It also divides by function, ranging from demographers and population scientists to community workers that deliver services; and by topics, including health, development, legal, ethical, and social issues. There are, of course to be kept in mind, multiple definitions of both reproductive health and population and development.

Multiple agendas

The definition of what is important in international population policy has evolved over 40 years from control to Cairo, the geo-political power balance from “North” to “South,” and new issues have come on the scene (examples include fistula, female genital cutting, human trafficking, low fertility, climate change, age structure, and youth bulge).

Some terms, such as population control or regulation, have fallen out of favor for very good reasons, while others remain even as the issue and means to respond to it undergo metamorphosis. The result is an overlapping array of terms and agendas, each with its own constituencies. The list includes officially-agreed upon terms from UN documents — most important, the Cairo Program of Action — but also related terms used in the global health and development communities.

While terminology is sometimes chosen as a matter of convenience or custom, on population issues, words matter.

At times there is a political agenda implicit in word “choice”—such as abandonment of the Cairo agenda or weakness about controversial topics. At other times, terminology signals choices about where or how to take action. The result is a lack of clarity and only rarely cohesion in UN programming on this subject.

Does this help those who oppose this UN sponsored thesis? Not in terms of offering a counter view of the controversy, but only results in pointing out the lexicographical difficulties in economic development terminology.

One sided equation?

There are several established international institutions, the main one‘s being WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA and the World Bank which work in harmony under various international agreements to help generate the mechanics of the policy of economic development without regard, of course, to the pro-family avocations regarding the high philosophical attributes of natural or traditional family.

These organizations have concentrated their resources in the countries with the highest maternal mortality rates to strengthen their health systems to provide a full range of maternal health services, from family planning to emergency obstetric care.

Compared to this, the international pro-family elements actually provide absolutely nothing to support the miseries of many in the developing world to even be in a position to seek merely their vocal support.

So, basically we have to find the solution, or should I say, resolution, of this glaringly one sided equation, as I see it, between this current UN & international trends in practice and those which theoretically are espousing the natural family.

Reluctantly, I cannot but submit that the natural or traditional family has little chance of overtaking the well coordinated modalities in place regarding the size of the modern family under this will devised formulae of the international community.

Candidly speaking, I do not see much chance of such an occurrence in the foreseeable future.

The UN work in respect of family remains within the general guidelines provided for and now contained in the Strategic Framework 2008-2011: Accelerating Progress and National Ownership of the ICPD Program of Action. The framework is currently under review to inform its extension to 2013 as part of a broad effort to bring UN agencies’ planning cycles in line and is intended to provide direction for all levels of work including research by UNFPA.

As a comparative analysis tool, let me give here the mechanics of decision making that is undertaken under the UN system and the one that is, I think in place by being adopted, against this perspective, by the pro-family adherents.

Decisions about policy and administrative, financial and program matters — including strategic plans and major structural and procedural changes — are made by the Executive Director and senior staff with the approval of the Fund’s (acronym for UNFPA) Executive Board.

The Board meets three times per year and is comprised of 36 UN member countries with geographic balance. 36 members who serve on the Board for three years and are [10] a Bureau comprised of UNFPA staff, a President, and four Vice Presidents serves as the secretariat for the Board, organizing meetings and facilitating dialogue and decision-making through the regional groupings.

At Board meetings, the member states are joined by a number of observers, which include the world’s major & large international NGOs such as the International Planned Parenthood Federation and Partners in Population and Development, other UN agencies with related mandates such as WHO, and others mentioned above. With such extensive planning at different tiers of bureaucracy and experts, no wonder, there is in place an elaborate system of planning international level of population dynamics.

Compared to this we have in the pro-family network, a number of prominent NGOs and the World Congress of Families. The contribution of NGOs has been impressive over the years, keeping in mind the very modest funds at their disposal and the relative lack of experts and professionals in their fold.

This latter deficiency has had telling effect since even a cursory look at the leaders of this movement of NGOs would reveal the extent to which well to do and well meaning individuals have a monopoly over the events that take place; this produces the inevitable consequence that such advocacy is usually without having genuine scholars or professionals represent such NGOs who are needed to articulate the semantics and arguments against the formidable arsenal of prepared briefs that the UN is able to muster. No wonder, over the years, this baneful position has produced the central theme of the over-all present status quo that is now well entrenched.

A word may be added here about the World Congress of Families. According to its own website: “The World Congress of Families (WCF) is the leading international platform to exchange ideas of dozens of the world’s major Pro-Family and Pro-Life groups and organizations. The WCF fosters an international network of pro-family organizations, scholars, and political groups that seek to restore the natural family as the fundamental social unit, the ’seedbed’ of good citizenship.”

The working of the WCF is described to be a “practical effort to build greater understanding and encourage new networks and initiatives among family advocates at the national and international levels.”

Since I am myself a part of this movement, it is only appropriate that I do not go out of my way to eulogize the efforts that have been undertaken by the WCF in this context; rather I leave it to the erudite reader to make an honest and independent assessment about this matter. But other than this kind of evaluation, it is submitted to this audience that that my other reflections are my own considered viewpoints on this matter of “demographic winter”.

However, the serious reverses that have been met by the pro-family movement particularly in North America and in Europe in the field of law and constitutional developments would suggest that much improvement is needed by the said NGO community.

he only success that has been witnessed in this respect has come from the Muslim countries in the international scene; such nations have solidly stood to vouch for the traditional family values and professed the inherent advantages of the message of the monotheistic faiths to stress the real benefits of the family being a union of man and a woman.

Broadly speaking, the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) has always advocated in all its relations the philosophy to:

  • promote the Family as the union of a man and a woman, and thus forms the fundamental social unit and seedbed of civil society.
  • promote the inalienable rights of the family directly linked to human rights.
  • remind us of the family mission, as a community of love and solidarity which in a most complete way transmits cultural, ethical, social, spiritual and religious values.
  • promote a culture of family marital life through proper mutual care for the wellbeing of the spouses and the children.

The ideas canvassed herein this message are also shared by the goals of the WCF, but the concept of one man and one woman relationship for a marriage for the purpose of procreation, has a spiritual message in traditional values of family—this is an idea that is not really presented in its required contemporary semantic and scholarly form by the protagonists of such values these days.

The result is a repetitious state of affairs in most of the literature that has emanated from the writings of most who have done this perspective defense on the subject of declining birthrates on behalf of pro-family activities of the WCF.

This has been very damaging to their cause since it manifests an archaic projection of hackneyed ideas. But the truth is that such views being really fundamentally universal in nature, there has been, and I say so with respect, a failure of communication by well meaning people who lacked the academic clarity and stature to articulate the brief they had properly.

In particular there has been the striking absence of any meaningful mention of the concepts of Reproductive and Sexual Health and Reproductive Rights of women in such situations. This is most lamentable for it reflects the utter inability of those espousing to be the articulators of pro-family briefs, of not properly understanding the contours or indeed the substantive content of contemporary debates concerning the subject of population declines.

The correspondence amongst the various sections of the world’s diversity is seldom, if ever, present in the discussions of the WCF. Compared to this there is the much need diversity in the UN system. For instance, the UN NGO Advisory Panel held its first annual meeting in July 2010, including representatives of various civil society constituencies from all UNFPA regions.

For example, members include a demographer from Brazil, the head of a faith-based organization from Kenya, a young person from Macedonia, and representatives of international NGOs such as the International Planned Parenthood Federation and Amnesty International.

The NGO Panel also maintains a 2,000-strong database of NGOs with whom they can communicate and consult on relevant issues. From my on experience, I know such consultations are never visible in the deliberations of the WCF. I only hope that this presentation is taken for that kind of internal review without which proper understanding of the problem at hand is not really possible.

The existence of these internal and external advisory bodies is a standard tenet of good management, and offers the potential for the UN to receive a substantial amount of useful advice about what its priorities should be. If it interacts productively with these entities in listening to their advice and then transparently reflecting or rejecting it, it should be able to expect that, in return, those groups will carry out and promote the chosen priorities.

The participants of this Congress have thus a heavy burden to carry as they are assembled here to discuss in this Moscow Demographic Summit: “Family and the Future of Humankind.” It is a difficult load to carry and I pray that those who are articulating the traditional family brief are competent enough to analyze the various issues raised briefly by me today. Thank you.

 

 

*. Farooq Hassan—D.Phil.; B A Juris, MA. M.Litt, (Oxon), DCL (Columbia), DIA (Harvard), Of Lincoln’s Inn, Barrister at Law, UK, Attorney at Law, US, Senior Advocate Supreme Court (QC) of Pakistan; President Pakistan Ecology Council; President, Pakistan Family Forum; Chairman, Pakistan League for Human Rights, amongst his major international recognitions include the Massachusetts Senate Honor of Recognition 1994 and in 1995 for his work in international human rights and education, the grant of highly prestigious King Faisal Memorial Award for 2002 by Saudi Arabia and in 2003 he received the International Professor of the Year of Human Rights Award in Riyadh, the 2006 London International Islamic Award for his work in Women’s needed legal reforms in Muslim countries; In 2003 he was made the David M. Kennedy Visiting Scholar & Professor of International Studies, Kennedy Center & in 1989 became Visiting Professor, Fellow, Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, and in 1990 was made a professor and visiting Fellow of Human Rights Program of Harvard Law School. The author has been Advisor to four Pakistani Prime Ministers on Foreign Affairs & Law, Member & Delegate to the UN Human Rights Commission, and the UN Sub Commission on Human Rights, Geneva. He has also represented Pakistan delegations to the UN GA and was the leader of Pakistan Delegation to the International Criminal Court (ICC); He is currently the UN Special Ambassador for Family, the President of the American Institute of South Asian Strategic Studies, Boston; In 2004 he became the first Pakistani scholar to be given a distinguished Visiting Professorship in India at the JNU in Delhi, & to give Memorial Lectures at Banaras Hindu University, Universities of Mumbai, Goa and at Ambedkar Center at Aurangabad University. As an expert in strategic studies, human rights, family issues and Islamic laws he has been invited by numerous intellectual institutions of repute: in India, by e.g. SAPRA Foundation, Institute of Strategic and Policy Studies, Bombay, Nehru Foundation, Y.B. Chuvan and the Gandhi Foundations; in US he has been invited, for instance by the Carnegie & Brookings Institutions, in London, by the International Institute of Strategic Studies, and in France by International Human Rights, Strasbourg. He is member of the International Planning and Selection Committees of the World Congress of Families.

[1] See generally, Jennifer Butler: Born Again: The Christian Right Globalized. Rev. Jennifer Butler is Executive Director of Faith in Public Life. An ordained Presbyterian minister, Rev. Butler most recently served as the Presbyterian Church (USA) Representative to the United Nations. During her nine years at the U.N., she represented the denomination on issues ranging from women’s rights to the Iraq war. She also taught courses at New York University’s graduate program in Global Studies. Rev. Butler served in the Peace Corps from 1989 to 1991 in Belize, Central America. She earned a Master of Divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary.

[2] See generally: http://www.greaterdemocracy.org/archives/000421.html; Islam & Extremism, Synopsis of Address presented by Professor Dr. Farooq Hassan at the Center for Society & Secularism, Mumbai, India, 2005.

[3] See my address and presentation in Warsaw WCF, WORLDCONGRESS IV: 2007: http://www.twigbender.com/WCF4/wcf4.plan2.htm

[4] See article: Kathryn Joyce: Missing: The “RIGHT” Babies. Christian-right activists look at falling birthrates among whites and rising Muslim immigration in Europe and warn of a looming ‘demographic winter’, who cites an interview of Steve Mosher. http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=24346

[5] See op cit: the comments of Kathryn Joyce on this topic: “Despite the lip service the pro-family movement gives to uniting all the ‘children of Abraham’ against common enemies, the sense of a more tangible foe — Muslim immigration — bleeds through their cooperative rhetoric. Farooq Hassan, a Harvard law professor and one of the few Muslim representatives in this pro-family movement, chastised his colleagues for their transparent appeals to nationalism: ‘The rest of the world doesn’t have the same problems as Europe. The Western world wants more people in Europe, but you don’t care if there are more families in the Third World. You want less families here’.”

[6] See http://www.worldcongress.org/wcf5.spkrs/wcf5.hassan.htm, UN Regional Conference , 4 May 2005 Islamabad ,on Muslim Ulama & Implementing Restrictive Family and Population Policies, Rapporteur, FAROOQ HASSAN: International Ulama Conference on Population and Development ( Women’s Reproductive Rights) Link: http://www.readingislam.com/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1153698300026&pagename=Zone-English-Discover_Islam%2FDIELayout, 18 May 2005, see also UN Regional UN Conference Islamabad, Rights of the Child, Islamic Perspectives, May 2005, Farooq Hassan, Report on Islamic Perspectives of the Rights of Child at Link: www.defendmarriage.com/Hassan_Children.cfm

Moreover, to be fair, we have to mention the formidable research work undertaken in this connection by, inter alia, Center for Global Development (CGD). CDG’s Rachel Nugent, for instance has co-chaired in 2010 working group on this very subject with my esteemed colleague, Professor David Bloom from Harvard University’s School of Public Health, and

[7] Indeed one notable NGO that is very active in many such activates, just backed of from even nominal support of this effort of mine and another, perhaps better known than the former, quite happily circulated my report as its own without any acknowledgement of its sources.

[8] See STAFF REPORT of Center for Global Development (CGD)2010, 5-6

[9]. Source: World Development Indicators, 2009.

[10] Members are elected by ECOSOC on a regional basis: eight from Africa; seven from Asia and the Pacific, including the Middle East; four from Eastern Europe; five from Latin America and the Caribbean, and 12 from the bloc known as “Western Europe and others,” which includes the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.


Дата публикации: 2011-07-06 01:42:42