An obstetrician on trial for trafficking Chinese infants has been convicted on seven counts and given a suspended death sentence.
The case, according to an American expert on China’s infamous one-child policy, highlights just one of the policy’s many unintended consequences.
Reggie Littlejohn, president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, said the one-child policy, which her group actively opposes, is “the driving force in this trafficking.”
“Couples who do not have a son want to obtain a boy through trafficking. Couples who already have a son may want to traffic a girl into their family, to ensure that their son will have a bride when he grows up,” she explained.
Littlejohn said that in China, “the marriage market is on the road to collapse.”
“Because of the pronounced gender imbalance caused by gendercide – the selective abortion of baby girls – there are currently about 37 million more males living in China than females,” she said.
According to the Voice of America, obstetrician Zhang Shuxia in Shaanxi province was convicted of trafficking seven infants after she convinced their parents their babies were dying or had died.
One of the babies died, but the other six eventually were returned to their real parents, according to the report.
The court found that Zhang, a doctor, sold seven babies to traffickers, receiving $3,300 for female newborns and $7,700 for males.
The report said the trial, which started in August, horrified China’s residents, who “called for the courts to give Zhang the harshest sentence because, as a maternity doctor, she had special responsibilities to protect her patients.”
One lawyer who was identified only as “Zhang” on a microblog account said: “What is the reason for the suspended sentence? They should execute the death penalty immediately.”
Littlejohn said: “Our hearts go out to the parents who gave up their newborns because this obstetrician, whom they trusted, lied to them and told them that their children were dying of an incurable disease. We can only imagine the sense of betrayal they must feel.”
Littlejohn said official numbers don’t exist, but experts estimate there are between 70,000 and 200,000 children trafficked each year in China.
She noted the U.S. State Department considers China on the same level as North Korea and Sudan regarding child trafficking.
Littlejohn recently participated in the release of a new documentary film on why an estimated 200 million girls have “disappeared” in China.
She was recently in Hong Kong for the premier of the new movie, titled “It’s a Girl.” She told WND it appears the world is becoming increasingly more aware of the violence perpetrated against infant girls in China and elsewhere.
A campaign accompanying the movie offers viewers an opportunity to help save baby girls.
Because only male offspring carry on the family name, millions of baby girls are aborted or killed after they are born in China and other countries.
“I killed eight girl children,” said one woman in the documentary.
The movie represents growing opposition around the world to the forced abortions.
Littlejohn said more people are aware of the crisis now, but some interest has been lost since China’s Communist Party recently claimed that the forced-abortion policy had been eased.
Chinese officials said couples now will be allowed two children if either of the parents is an only child. Before the change, both parents were required to be only children.
However, Littlejohn pointed out forced abortion remains in place.
“Regardless of the number of children allowed, women who get pregnant without permission will still be dragged out of their homes, strapped down to tables and forced to abort babies that they want, even up to the ninth month of pregnancy,” she said.
“It does not matter whether you are pro-life or pro-choice on this issue. No one supports forced abortion, because it is not a choice.”
Even Chinese officials admitted the change would have little impact.
WND reported Wang Peian, deputy director of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, told the Chinese news agency Xinhua that “the number of couples covered by the new policy is not very large across the country.”
In an interview with WND, Littlejohn said it’s important to show people the horrors of the forced abortion policies.
Statements such as the recent one by Chinese officials are attempts, she believes, to distract people from the violence.
“Of course they don’t want people to know the brutal truth,” she said.
The “It’s a Girl” project is supported by Amnesty International.
See Women’s Rights Without Frontiers explain “gendercide”:
See the movie trailer: