Contra Nocendi International submits views on the General Comment of Right to Life



Contra Nocendi International has submitted its views on the UN Human Rights Committee’s Draft General Comment of the Right to Life. We applaud the Committee for taking on a necessary, but nonetheless difficult endeavor to bring further clarity to the very important law on the right to life. We also wish to applaud the Committee for opening up its Draft General Comment to the public for comments.


Contra Nocendi raised an objection to any potential insinuation that there is scope within Article 6 of the ICCPR for the criminalization of abortion. We see the right to competent abortion services as an indispensible part of the right to life and leaving room for the potential criminalization of the right to life will endanger the lives of women. We were very proud to support a recent joint CSO statement on the right to abortion services, which was submitted to the UN Human Rights Council session. We firmly agree with the statement as it makes it clear that criminalization will drive abortion services underground and will expose more women to unsafe abortion services, which will lead to the needless loss of life.


Contra Nocendi also supported the Committee’s stance on the need to provide services to persons deprived of their liberty as an issue tied to the right to life. Contra Nocendi encouraged the Committee to make it clear that the provision of medical services, including preventative care, is a part of the obligation of the state to protect the right to life of persons deprived of their liberty.


Lastly, Contra Nocendi encouraged the Committee to include the van Boven principles in its comments on reparations. This includes expressly recognizing the potential right to redress and reparation for indirect victims as well as the forms reparations may take. As an organization committed to promoting human rights, we firmly believe that the van Boven principles must be seen as the minimum starting point when it comes to reparations.


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