Speech of Branislav Škripek MEP to LIBE committee (Monday 5th September 2016)
There is much that is praiseworthy in this report, focusing as it does on the most disadvantaged and vulnerable in our society; namely children, those with disabilities, national minorities (especially Roma), victims of human trafficking and the elderly.
I would heartily embrace the recommendation on the rights of those with disabilities, and in this context note the untiring work of my colleague Mrs Stevens, whose conference this month on multilingualism aims to show how our rich linguistic heritage plays an important role in achieving equal rights for all.
This annual report should capture the state of play in the previous year for fundamental rights in the EU. It should be based on the EU charter of Fundamental rights. Article 1 starts with the right to being treated with dignity.
Human Trafficking does everything to rob people of their intrinsic human dignity, and is, in my opinion, the second largest disgrace we have on this continent. We have visited refugee camps where prostitution and human trafficking preys on these vulnerable people as they move from one country to another. How can we call our societies ‘developed’ when there are more people in slavery today, than at any time when the ‘slave trade’ was legal. Over 30 million people worldwide; and even here in Europe millions are deprived of their liberty, exploited for money, abused, drugged, raped and even have their organs harvested. Yes, dear colleagues this is happening in Europe, and we are turning a blind eye.
You may be wondering what I believe is the biggest disgrace on our continent.
- It is not the horror of domestic violence – devastating as that is, tearing apart families.
- It is not the racism and xenophobia that labels individuals by the colour of their skin or their ethnic origin.
- It is not the religious discrimination which uses dogma of whatever creed to disrespect one another, ignoring Jesus’ words “Do to others as you would have them do to you”.
The biggest disgrace on our continent is the disrespect of article 2 of the EU charter of Fundamental rights – the right to life. Every year we kill over a million of our citizens, in the womb, creating a demographic winter where it is hard to imagine spring will ever come. Our continent, our culture and our consciences are soaked in the blood of innocents – and we don’t even mention it in our annual report on fundamental rights.
Honourable members, I know that this view is shared by few in this house and angrily opposed by many, but if children were being killed in your constituency by poisoning or being butchered, I would hope you would use all your strength and political power to stop it. And whether this house has the competence to mandate a ceasefire in this war on babies or not, we do have a duty to share best healthcare practice. Abortion is not good healthcare. Are we so unimaginative that we can find no solution to those finding they are unexpectedly pregnant?
Therefore medically, morally, demographically, environmentally and politically I urge you to stop abortions in your member states, the number one violation of European fundamental rights.