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Catholic Institute for International Relations


  1. Condoms
  2. International Programmes Director
  3. Funding of the UN Abortion and Contraceptive Activities


In our view CIIR supports the use of male and female condoms for the prevention of HIV.  We totally disagree with CIIR's opinion on this and CIIR are in clear violation of Roman Catholic teaching on this issue.

On page 20 of CIIR's publication entitled HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa - The threat to development, under the heading: Barrier methods of protection: do they work?, it states the following:

"Research shows conclusively that good quality condoms are highly effective in preventing transmission of HIV and other STI's.  If used correctly and consistently, condoms can reduce the risk of HIV transmission by a factor of 10,000.  However, theoretical efficacy in the laboratory is not the same as efficacy in practice, hence the higher documented failure rate of condoms as a contraceptive compared to the contraceptive pill.  Moreover, there are social taboos that prevent the use of condoms in some situations such as marriage as they are often associated with lack of trust.  (Married women are therefore at great risk of contracting HIV and other STIs if their husbands have extra-marital sex.)  These taboos are reinforced by some of the churches and other groups opposed to condom use.

The female condom has the advantage that it is controlled by women, who are often more motivated then men to use protection.  Research shows that female condoms provide highly effective protection against infections and pregnancy.  In Zimbabwe, sales of female condoms have exceeded expectations, and they are now being marketed elsewhere in the region.  The development of a safe and effective viginal microbicide that could protect against HIV/AIDS would also be of great benefit to women, and research in this area should be encouraged."

International Programmes Director - CIIR

If you look on our Campaigns Page for Christian Aid and for the Church of England Synod you will see that there was an HIV discussion document for the February 12, 2004 Synod, entitled Telling the story: Being positive about HIV/AIDS - A Report by the Mission & Public Affairs Council, much of which seems to have been contributed to by Christian Aid.  We found the report very disturbing.  Also see our letter published in the C of E Newspaper and our submission to Synod.

We have discovered that Christian Aid's HIV report 'Dying to learn', written in a similar vein to the Synod report on HIV, states on page (ii) "The Author: Mary Garvey wrote this report as senior policy officer, HIV, in Christian Aid's Global Advocacy and Policy Division.  She is now director of international programmes at the Catholic Institute for International Relations."

Funding of the UN Abortion and Contraceptive Activities

According to the Universe (7 March 2004) 'More aid needed - The Catholic Institute for International Relations has joined forces with 53 other organisations to demand that the Chancellor increase UK overseas aid to the UN target of 0.7 per cent of Gross National Income.  A letter from the agencies to the Chancellor demands that he brings the UK's spending up to the UN level by 2008.  In 2002 the UK gave 0.31 per cent of GNI in aid and the Government's most recent spending revue stated that UK aid would reach 0.4 per cent from 2005-6.'

Also, in the same publication in the Universe 'UK urged to act now on Africa - Church aid agency CAFOD has called for the new 'Commisssion for Africa' launched by Prime Minister Tony Blair last week not to become just another talking shop.  The charity, which recently launched an appeal to help stave off famine in Eritrea, believes that only by the West committing the resources and political will necessary to fulfil the Millennium Development Goal of halving world poverty by 2015 will Africa ever be able to climb out of poverty.  "We have heard a deluge of words on how to help Africa - what we need now is action," said CAFOD's Head of Public Policy, George Gelber.  "The UK can make a massive difference to the future of the continent by focusing on debt, trade and aid."  The Commission, which will be chaired by the Prime Minister, will look at Africa in relation to economics, education, conflict resolution, health, the environment, HIV/AIDS, Governments and culture.  Mr Blair hopes it will come up with specific solutions which he can take forward to the G8 Summit in 2005 at which the UK holds the presidency.'

United for Life has written to all the Roman Catholic Bishops responsible for the Department for International Affairs and all the Roman Catholic Bishops responsble for Christian Responsbility and Citizenship, the Director of CAFOD, the Director of CIIR and the General Secretary of the Bishops Conference.  Our short letter ran as follows: 'On reading the Universe of 7 March 2004 I found two articles about CIIR's and CAFOD's lobbying of the UK Government, one lobbying to increase UK funds to the UN and the other lobbying the Commission for Africa launched by the Prime Minister, Tony Blair.  Will CIIR and CAFOD be lobbying the Government to withold UK funding from IPPF (International Planned Parenthood Federation) and the UNFPA (United Nations Fund for Population Activities) both of which fund abortion and contraceptive activities around the world?  Social and international justice requires both organisations to do so.'

Direct Link to Rubber World the leading magazine for the rubber industry
Once on Rubber World site click on 'Articles/Archives' then scroll to month 'June' & year '1993' for CM Roland's article entitled : The barrier performance of latex rubber.

Take Action - Write to:

CIIR Executive Director and the CIIR Chairman at www.ciir.org or e-mail them at:info@ciir.org

Catholic Bishops Conference at www.catholic-ew.org.uk

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