LONDON, May 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) has commented on last year's abortion statistics for England and Wales, which have just been published.

Paul Tully, SPUC general secretary, said: The scandal of government backed abortions is reflected in these figures, which show the highest ever number of NHS-funded abortions. State provision of abortion is now a major aspect of government policy - a policy which hurts women and kills unborn children.

For the first time, in 2008 the majority of abortions were performed in private clinics at the NHS' expense.

The figures show a slight drop in the total abortions registered under the Abortion Act in 2008, but the figure remains higher than the 2006 number, and more abortions than ever were funded by tax-payers. The number of NHS abortions in private clinics has increased by 11-fold in the past 17 years.

The total number of abortions under the Abortion Act 1967 has now exceeded seven million.

SPUC is on +44-(0)20-7091-7091 and Paul Tully's mobile phone number is +44-(0)7939-178719.