Pope Francis says abortion is like “hiring a hitman” and can never be condoned, even when the foetus is gravely sick or likely to die.
The pontiff was speaking on Saturday at a conference at the Vatican on the use of abortion when the unborn child is found to have a serious illness.
“Is it licit to throw away a life to resolve a problem?” he asked. “Is it licit to hire a hitman to resolve a problem?”
Pope also condemned decisions taken to abort based on prenatal testing, adding that a human being was “never incompatible with life”.
“No human being can ever be incompatible with life. Every child is a gift that changes the history of a family and this child needs to be welcomed, loved and cared for,” he said.
He also said that in cases where the baby is expected to die at birth or soon after, it should still get medical attention in the womb, adding that there was value in such an approach for the parents.
“Taking care of these children helps parents to grieve and not only think of it as a loss, but as a step on a path taken together,” said Francis.
This is not the first time the pontiff would be using strong language to equate abortion. In 2018, he was condemned after comparing an abortion to hiring a “contract killer”.