Church shocks pro-life lobby

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The Independent Online
Sydney (Reuter) - Anti-abortion campaigners and church leaders expressed shock yesterday after an influential section of the country's third biggest church came out in support of legal abortion on Sunday.

The New South Wales synod of the Uniting Church of Australia voted for the general legality of abortion, without limiting it to cases of medical necessity, rape or foetal defect.

Abortion is unlawful in most Australian states but courts give doctors wide discretion to perform the operation. 'I cannot believe that a church which calls itself Christian could . . . condone such an action,' said the Right to Life chairman, Margaret Tighe, who likened the decision to the betrayal of Christ by Judas Iscariot.