Pro-life jurists to the UN: “Abortion is not a right”. The San José Articles upend the ideology of the United Nations.

Presented on 6 October in the Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium at UN Headquarters in New York City was a document of capital importance reaffirming and proclaiming the right to life of each and every human being. This document is entitled The San José Articles because active in San José, Costa Rica, is the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights that champions the right to life. The document itself is intended to be a response to the “culture of death” that by now has explicitly taken possession of the senior executives occupying the upper floors of international organizations, first and foremost the United Nations. In no uncertain terms this document affirms the scientifically certified humanity of the conceived, and likewise underscores that unborn children are already covered by UN treaties guaranteeing human rights insofar as they are human beings. In addition, it openly challenges the organizations that argue abortion is an international right to provide legal proof of such an assertion, and also calls on governments to make positive use of UN documents for exactly the opposite purpose, that being to protect nascent human life from those who seek to tamper with it through abortion.

The secretary general  of the United Nations, Mr. Ban ki-Moon, has repeatedly asserted that abortion is a right. The Articles of San José now challenge him on precisely this point: no United Nations document presents abortion as a right of the individual to be supported and promoted. Whoever succumbs to such siren songs, state the signatories of these Articles of San José, is mistaken and perpetrates outlandish abuses in the name of the (all too many) documents generated by the United Nations.

Certainly, the lack of any mention of such an explicit “right” in United Nations documents does not avoid abortion from being sold ‘under the counter’ by all too many like-minded supporting parties through the interpretation of intentionally ambiguous wording (e.g. “reproductive health”, “sexual rights”), but no interpretative ‘coup d’état’ on the part of any Secretary General can manipulate public international documents approved by the concert of the world’s nations.

The Articles of San José are a masterpiece of pro-life philosophy, jurisprudence and politics. Leading the drafters was Mr. Robert P. George, professor of law at the University of Princeton and ‘father’ of the ‘Manhattan Declaration’, which has by now become a most important international movement. He is known in Italy through his recent book, “Natural Law in the Age of Pluralism, published by Vita Nova in its recent issues. He was assisted by Ambassador Grover Joseph Rees III, and by Mr. Paolo G. Carozza and Mr. O. Carter Snead, professors at the Law School of the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. The initial draft was then fine tuned through the exacting endeavors of close to 30 experts in fields such as international law, health care and public administration from all over the world, including Lord David Alton of the House of Lords, Mr. Nicolas Windsor (the descendent of the British royal family noted for having converted to Catholicism), the renowned philosopher and Oxford professor Mr. John Finnis, the Supreme Commander of the Knights of Columbus Mr. Carl Anderson, and Mr. Giuseppe Banegiano, an Italian working for the World Health Organization.

In the course of the next few weeks the Articles of San José will be presented officially in political and institutional fora in London, Madrid, Santiago del Chile, Buenos Aires, San José di Costa Rica, Calgary (Canada), Washington D.C., Manila, Strasbourg (one of the sites of the European Parliament), and Rome as well.


Bendetta Cortese (compiled from data on



To read the Italian translation of the Articles of San José, click here

To read the Articles of San José in the original English version, click here