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Protection of Conscience Project

Service, not Servitude
Legal Commentary

The Australian Egyptian Doctors and the Coptic Doctors

Delivered 6 October, 2008
Queen's Hall, Parliament House, Melbourne, Australia
Reproduced with permission

The Australian Egyptian Doctors strongly appose the abortion bill. We feel this bill is being rushed with out adequate debate, in particular with the primary health care professionals and largely with the general public.

The bill as it stands compromises the well being and safety of women who may be experiencing stress, grief and hesitation in a highly charged emotional situation. It bypasses safeguards that would support women before, during and after an abortion, and ignores the serious and long term consequences of abortion.

Moreover it coerces the health practitioner to behave or act in a manner which comprises his or her ethics, morals, culture and religious beliefs.

We strongly oppose this bill as it stands and recommend that this bill be referred for a proper discussion and public debate involving the different community groups and health professionals concerned.

Dr Magdy Ramzy, Dr Samir Ibrahin, Dr Safwat Messiha, Dr Emad Aboud
Dr Sarah Mikael, Dr Emil Bassilious, Dr Nabil Boulis, Dr Adel Farag, Dr Adel Assaad Dr Safwat Hannah, Dr Younan Tosson, Dr Amir Malek

A Statement by a group of Islamic Doctors
In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Life, according to Islam, is precious and no one has the right to terminate it except the Creator, Almighty God. Abortion is a form of terminating a (potential) life. The Quran describes the formation of the human body through various stages:

In all stages abortion is not allowed legally or morally in Islam except:

If the fetus is a serious danger to the health of the mother.

On the other hand the long term psychological effects on a woman who would have such an abortion should not be underestimated.

We oppose any legislation that legalizes abortion.

Dr Hussain Alabodi, Dr Seham Mostafa , Dr Abdullah Mohammed Arakji
Dr Mir Mohamed Habib , Dr Mohammed Amjad Hussain , Dr Mariam Sogra
Hussain , Dr Ahsan Muhammed Hussain , Dr Mohammed Meteenul
Dr Amrooha Hussain , Dr Abdus Salaam Ansari

Eastern Christian Doctors

The WHO estimates that approximately 50 million abortions take place each year.  That is more than 1 billion abortions worldwide in the last 20 years. In Victoria 20,000 abortions take place each year.

This Abortion Law Reform Bill will do nothing to change this assault on human life.  How can doctors justify the sacrificing of so many innocent human lives while their duty is to respect, care for and save lives and to 'first do no harm?

I have worked as a general practitioner overseas from 1985 until 2006. When I graduated in 1982 I took the Hippocratic Oath which among other things forbids the involvement of doctors in abortion. My personal, professional and moral judgement has and always will be against abortion.

However I've always spent time talking with patients considering an abortion to ensure that they have carefully considered the future of their pregnancy.

After such conversations many patients who have reflected on their decision and later given birth were very relieved and grateful that I had spent the time and given them the support and advice they needed.

Many of the children who were to be aborted, I now care for as patients.

This legislation will have a grave impact on my ability to talk with women such as these who are considering abortions.

My husband Dr Nizar Farjou shares the same opinion.

Dr. Nadida Kachkouche


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