Statements

Friday 4 March 2011
Statement of the Holy See in Explanation of Position on the Resolution “Women, the girl child and HIV/AIDS” (E/CN.6/2011/L.3) of the 55th session of the Commission on the Status of Women of the United Nations Economic and Social Council, New York, 4 March 2011
Statement of the Holy See in Explanation of Positionon the Resolution “Women, the girl child and HIV/AIDS” (E/CN.6/2011/L.3)55th session of the Commission on the Status of Women of the United Nations Economic and Social Council New York, 4 March 2011 Mr. Chairman, On the adoption of this resolution, my delegation firmly reaffirms the importance of providing adequate care for all who suffer from HIV and AIDS, including women and girls and is deeply convinced that much more can be done to ensure access to effective and affordable therapies. In this regard, the Catholic Church worldwide provides approximately one-fourth of all care for such persons and knows well the importance of fighting this disease. In the field of prevention, my delegation emphasizes that more attention and resources be dedicated to support a value-based approach grounded in the human dimension of sexuality, that is to say, a spiritual and human renewal that leads to a new way of behaving toward others. The spread of AIDS can be stopped effectively, as has been affirmed also by public health experts, when this respect for the dignity of human nature and for its inherent moral law is included as an essential element in HIV prevention efforts. Regarding the present text, my delegation insists on the necessity of distinguishing more clearly between the health care of those who suffer from HIV/AIDS and some methods of prevention that are contrary to women’s dignity. In this context, the Holy See reaffirms all the reservations it has made on past occasions with regard to the term "sexual and reproductive health" and "services," that the Holy See does not consider abortion or abortion services to be a dimension of such terms; that regarding the term “family planning” the Holy See in no way endorses contraception or the use of condoms, either as a family planning measure or in HIV/AIDS prevention programmes; and that with regard to the education of youth in sexuality the rights of parents must be fully respected, as affirmed in international instruments (cf. UDHR, Art. 26,3; ICCPR, Art. 18,4; CRC, Art. 5). Thank you, Mr. Chairman.