Tuesday 10 December 2019

Pressure mounts on Christian minister over anti-abortion group

Junior health minister Paul Blokhuis. Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl

Junior health minister Paul Blokhuis is coming under increasing pressure to stop funding a Christian group which offers advice to women who don’t want to continue with a pregnancy.

Blokhuis, a member of the Protestant party ChristenUnie, has so far refused to act on criticism about the group, named Siriz, which was set up by the Dutch anti-abortion campaign group (VBOK).

The two coalition partners VVD and D66 had wanted to give Blokhuis time to draw up strict rules to ensure that Siriz gives neutral information to women who are unhappy about being pregnant.

However, it has now emerged that the organisation took part in a controversial anti-abortion campaign called Week van het Leven (week of life) at the end of last month. This has put further pressure on Blokhuis to tackle the situation, the AD said on Tuesday.

They want the minister to stop Siriz taking part in anti-abortion events as long as it receives government cash.

Earlier this year, the Labour party tried to have Siriz’ funding stopped.

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