BEIJING, Prc. – The Chinese government announced Sunday that it will provide funding to Planned Parenthood, a women’s health organization which the U.S. House of Representatives voted last week to defund. Li Bin, who heads China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission, said China will contribute $528 million to Planned Parenthood for the 2016 fiscal year in exchange for the continued donation of tissue samples which China plans to apply towards stem cell research.
“China is committed to working towards a better future, not just for the Chinese people but for all people around the world,” Li said. “It is for this reason we have entered into a partnership with Planned Parenthood. It is not China’s intention to meddle in America’s political affairs, but nonetheless a woman’s right to medical treatment should not be jeopardized by the ever-changing political climate.”
In accordance with the agreement, Planned Parenthood will ship fetal tissue samples to several Chinese biomedical research and testing facilities on a monthly basis. Chinese scientists will then use the fetal tissue for a variety of medical related experiments including stem cell research and cloning. “China is committed to the advancement of human life through medical research,” Li said.
The Chinese government provides abortion services to women upon request except for the purpose of sex-selection, a method by which an expectant mother terminates the fetus based on the predicted sex of the child. China has historically used abortion as a means for population control and although the government doesn’t make public the exact number of abortions conducted annually, in 2008 it was estimated that the government performed approximately 13 million abortions. By comparison, there were an estimated 1.2 million abortions in the United States in 2008, amounting to roughly 2% of the female population.
Planned Parenthood came under fire recently amid allegations that the non-profit organization had been profiting off of the sale of fetal body parts. As a result, lawmakers introduced the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015, which passed the House last week but conservative lawmakers are skeptical as to whether it will successfully pass a Senate vote. Republican congressmen may decide to attach a Planned Parenthood defunding measure to an upcoming federal budget bill which could jeopardize the federal government’s ability to remain operational.