Bishops in the Philippines are halting dialogue with the local government as the country's president voices increasing support for a highly controversial Reproductive Health Bill.
'This bill fundamentally disrespects God's teachings on human dignity and the respect and protection of human life,' said Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro-Carambula, interim president of Human Life International.
The proposed legislation would attempt to control population growth through widespread distribution of contraceptives and compulsory sex education in schools. Human Life International reported that the bill has provisions to jail critics who provide undefined 'inaccurate' opposition to it.
A spokesman for the country's President Aquino, who backs the bill, said on May 9 that the president still hopes there will be 'common ground' reached in talks with the Filipino Catholic Church.
However, the Philippines Catholic bishops' conference responded on May 10 saying that negotiations are futile, as the president is likely to push the measure ahead despite the bishops' concerns"