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China vows to balance distorted sex ratio

Jan. 22, 2007 at 2:36 PM

BEIJING, Jan. 22 (UPI) -- Responding to China's growing sex ratio imbalance, officials have vowed to crack down on sex-selective abortions and fetus gender testing.

China's Xinhua news agency said that a recent statement issued by the nation's State Council and Central Committee of the Communist Party of China confirmed that such practices would be targeted to reach an acceptable sex balance.

"People who conduct illegal gender testing of fetuses and sex-selective abortions should face serious punishment," the statement said.

In 2005, China's expanding gender ratio reached 118 baby boys for every 100 girls and authorities immediately saw cause for concern.

The rise from 2000's numbers of 110 boys per 100 girls had created a "care for girls" campaign that apparently did little to quash the presence of such medical procedures.

In addition to limiting such medical services, Chinese officials have also sworn to increase the girls' safety from abandonment or attacks.

Xinhua said officials swore such discriminatory practices would be dealt with severely in the future.

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