The state of women’s rights more important than the 8 billion inhabitants

The UN restores order in terms of priorities. Instead of worrying about whether there are too many people on Earth – with an expected peak of 10.4 billion in the 2080s – the world should worry about women’s difficulties in exercising their human rights. reproduction, says the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), in charge of sexual and reproductive health issues.

Natalia Kanem, who heads the organization, considers it “wrong” to believe that global warming is due to the proliferation of human beings on a planet with limited resources. Moreover, the countries with the highest fertility rates are those which contribute the least to global warming but which suffer the most from its consequences.

The world’s population, “a reason to rejoice”

In its annual report on the state of the world’s population, UNFPA finds that there is a widespread belief that the world’s population is too large. The organization believes that passing the eight billion population mark “should be cause for celebration” because “it is a milestone that represents historic advances for humanity in the fields of medicine, science, health, agriculture and education”.

“The world’s population is reorganizing rapidly,” said Natalia Kanem at a press conference, because, while the population is reaching record highs, “the average global fertility rate is the lowest in living memory.” The ranking of the most populous countries in the world is set to change over the next 25 years, with India set to dethrone China.

Giving women the choice about fertility

The report calls for a radical rethinking of demographics with a focus on women’s rights. He finds that governments are anxious and are increasingly adopting policies aimed at increasing, reducing or maintaining fertility rates. However, these efforts are very often ineffective. According to Natalia Kanem, the main question is not whether the population is too large, but whether “everyone can exercise their fundamental right to choose the number of their children and the spacing of births? »

The answer is negative for almost half of the women (44%): “They cannot choose their contraception, their health care and decide if they want to have sex or with whom. And worldwide, nearly half of pregnancies are unintended. “Each year, half a million births take place among girls aged 10 to 14,” observes Natalia Kanem bitterly.

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