The United States has announced plans to cut its annual funding of the UN program for women and girls. The Trump administration has said that it is sending notice that would cut $32.5 million from the United Nations Population Fund as a result of the UNFPA’S partnership with the Chinese government that forces its citizens into abortion and involuntary sterilization.

UN reactions

The move has been criticized by the UNFPA, describing the announcement by the US government as based on faulty information which could lead to more instability in the Middle East and constitute a great danger to women and girls worldwide.

The agency helps women and girls in 155 countries across the world.

UN officials have denied the assertions, claiming that the UNFPA has nothing to do with abortion. They admitted that the funding from the United States goes majorly to emergency aid at a critical moment that the world is faced with the worst effect of humanitarian crises in decades. The action could be devastating to the health and vulnerability of women and girls around the globe, spokesperson for the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said.

Guterres is deeply worried by the decision of the US government to cut financial aid for the UNFPA and feels that the decision is borne out of an incorrect and false perception of the important works of the UN Population Agency,” the statement added.

The works of the UNFPA

In Syria alone, the United Nations Population Agency has estimated approximately 48,000 women with safe childbirth with more than 74,700 people with gender-based violence outreach it has helped. The agency has also rendered psychological health support to many, with the creation of 64 women’s centers and safe spaces, according to the agency’s spokesperson.

International reactions

In response, the Swedish Ambassador to the UN Olof Skoog said that Sweden is concerned about the US decision to cut funding to the UNFPA, and further said that his country feels the UN Population Agency is doing a great job by saving many lives, and, hence deserves their continued support.

Also, the British Ambassador to the United Nations Matthew Rycroft has said that the UK will continue to provide the needed support that the UN agency deserves.