Secretary of State Hillary Clinton waded into an explosive political debate in Canada Tuesday, with remarks on abortion certain to have embarrassed her hosts at the end of a two-day Group of Eight meeting.
After a disclaimer that she would not speak for Canada, Clinton proceeded to lay out a position in opposition to that taken by conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government, linking maternal health promotion in poor countries to “access to legal, safe abortion.”
Earlier this year, Harper announced that Canada would place the promotion of maternal and child health in the developing world at the center of its leadership of the G8...
On Tuesday, at a press conference in Quebec after a meeting of G8 foreign ministers, Clinton was asked in the light of the “debate in Canada,” whether she thought contraception and abortion should be included in the G8 maternal healthcare focus.
“I’m not going to speak for what Canada decides, but I will say that I’ve worked in this area for many years,” she replied. “And if we’re talking about maternal health, you cannot have maternal health without reproductive health. And reproductive health includes contraception and family planning and access to legal, safe abortion.”
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