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Socialist Alliance to support peaceful protest against ‘anti-life’ Pope Benedict

The Socialist Alliance today declared its support for the Saturday July 19 “NoToPope” protest planned to coincide with the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Sydne for World Youth Day.

“From an organisation that claims to be ‘pro-life’ the policy of the Catholic Church against condom use is pure hypocrisy”, Dick Nichols, Socialist Alliance National Coordinator said. “The position of the Pope on contraception is inhumane, outdated and dangerous.”

The Socialist Alliance spokesperson stated that Catholic Church’s anti-social and anti-human policies on contraception, sex education and abortion are a major cause of death, disease and suffering across the world.

“Each year, millions of people—including children—die unnecessarily as a result of HIV, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa, where over seventy per cent of infections, and eighty per cent of Aids-related deaths take place.

“Criminally, the Catholic Church also spreads pure misinformation, claiming that condoms are not effective in preventing the spread of HIV, effectively condemning millions of people to a life sentence.”

Like other groups and individuals who will be protesting on July 19, the Socialist Alliance spokesperson stressed that its support for the protest was not directed against the religious sentiment of Catholics, nor against World Youth Day, but against the anti-human policy of the Catholic Church, which condemns tens of thousands of people to death and suffering.

“We recognise that many Catholics disagree with their church’s policy,” Nichols said. “Like many others they are actively struggling for humane and realistic public health policies instead of prohibition and discrimination.”

Nichols urged all Catholics who oppose their church’s policy on condom use and safe sex to join the July 19 protest.

For interviews contact: Dick Nichols 02 9690 2508 0433 390 872

Email sydney@socialist-alliance.org Web www.socialist-alliance.org

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