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What an abortion ban really does
What an abortion ban really does

A step backwards for women's rights in Poland: an abortion should no longer even be possible if the fetus shows severe malformations and is not viable. Studies show that prohibition laws only lead to something completely different …

What an abortion ban really does
What an abortion ban really does

In the middle of Europe there are massive restrictions on hard-won rights for women: In Poland, the constitutional court has now ruled that an abortion due to severe malformations of the fetus is unconstitutional.

Poland already has one of the strictest abortion laws in Europe, but this is now to be tightened again. So far, a pregnancy could legally be terminated in the first three months if it was triggered by a rape, the birth endangered the mother's health or the baby had no chance of survival. This would remove the last exception - and thus the reason for 97 percent of all abortions carried out in Poland.

"It is cruel and violates human rights when women are forced to end a pregnancy even though the fetus is severely damaged," said Krystyna Kacpura of the Organization for Women's Rights and Family Planning, describing the procedure as "institutionalized violence State against women”.

Thousands therefore took to the streets, went on strike across the country in Poland and protested in social networks for women's self-determination.

However, this is not the first time that the national conservative Law and Justice party has pushed for a complete ban on abortion. In the past few years, this has not succeeded in parliamentary terms, so the tightening should now be enforced via the constitutional court - which has been politically conservative in recent years. A tactic that is currently also being used in the US, where President Donald Trump rushed through a new high judge a week before the election.

According to the Polish Supreme Court, the current abortion regulations violate the constitutional right to life. Abortions should only be legally possible after rape and if the mother's life and limb are at risk.

Prohibitions do not prevent abortions

It is more than questionable whether stricter laws would have the desired effect at all: because bans do not prevent abortions. They only ensure that women carry out this under questionable and unsanitary measures in secret and thus put their own lives at risk. This is proven by an analysis of the data on abortions worldwide between 1990 and 2014 by the Guttmacher Institute.

Illegal abortions using dangerous methods will increase with it

This shows that in countries where abortion is completely prohibited, an average of 37 out of 1000 women between the ages of 15 and 44 have aborted. In countries where an abortion is allowed, however, this number is even lower: on average, only 34 women out of 1,000 have terminated a pregnancy here.

68,000 women die every year

According to the World Health Organization, over 68,000 women worldwide die annually because their abortions were performed by people without any medical training or equipment, and millions of women suffer from complications or even lifelong health problems as a result.

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