Human Rights

Authorities in China balk at suggestion country is ending two-child policy


Despite numerous speculative reports that China might soon, even by the end of this year, begin to implement strategies to encourage rather than discourage childbearing in the country, the official newspaper of the People’s Republic of China says ‘not so fast.’

In an emailed press release, Reggie Littlejohn of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers noted that China Daily “acknowledges that the reference to family planning has been removed from the draft Marriage and Adoption sections of the Civil Code. However, it remains in the family planning section of the code.”

READ: 67-year-old woman in China threatened for refusing to abort twins

China Daily noted that “legislators explained on Tuesday that there’s a special law on family planning, so there’s no need to include similar content in the marriage section while drafting the civil code.  Related regulations can still be found in the Population and Family Planning Law.”

Littlejohn says that while it is always a possibility that the oppressive Chinese government could change its two-child policy (“relaxed” in recent years from a one-child policy), this change in the civil code draft essentially means nothing.

“We continue to press for the complete elimination of all coercive population control measures, effective immediately,” Littlejohn writes. “Now, under the two-child policy, all couples can have two children. Single women and third children, however, remain at risk for forced abortion. In addition, girls – especially second daughters – remain at risk of sex-selective abortion.”

Littlejohn says freedom must be extended to allow all women, married or unmarried, to “have as many children as they want,” and push to value the lives of baby girls, through programs like Women’s Rights Without Frontiers’ Save a Girl Campaign.

READ: The heartbreaking consequences of abortion in China and India

Littlejohn also warns that if the Chinese government ever does decide to move in a different direction, oppressive laws would likely still remain the order of the day in the Communist country, swinging toward forced pregnancy, “[g]iven the desperation the Chinese government faces because of its rapidly aging population….”

“China’s population problem is not that it has too many people, but rather that it has too few young people to sustain its rapidly aging elderly population, as well as a critical shortage of girls,” said Littlejohn, adding that China’s oppressive family planning policies, forced abortion, and gendercide are “the true war against women.”

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