Hundreds protest plan to further restrict abortion in Poland

AP
By Associated Press, 03 July 2018

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Hundreds of abortion-rights activists in Poland held a protest Monday against a proposed law that would ban abortions in cases involving irreparably damaged fetuses.

The activists who assembled outside Poland's parliament chanted "We want choice, not terror" as a special commission of legislators reviewed the proposal.

The commission decided that the draft — proposed by a civic group — needed more work before it goes to the lower house of parliament for debate.

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Iza Nowak, 38, attended the protest with her 4-year-old son to demand the "right to live the way I want to live." Nowak said she had terminated a pregnancy with a deformed fetus.

"We are not here to campaign for abortions, but to demand the right to choice," she said.

A small group of anti-abortion campaigners and Catholic nuns prayed in support of the proposal nearby.

As part of a hard-won compromise in a predominantly Catholic nation, Poland allows abortions when a woman's life or health is threatened, when a pregnancy results from a crime, and when tests indicate a high probability of incurable disease or irreparable disability in a fetus. The draft would eliminate the third condition.

Opposition lawmaker Joanna Scheuring-Wielgus alleged the bill was timed to divert attention from a new law that is forcing Supreme Court judges in Poland to retire. The law has put Warsaw at odds with the European Union, which has triggered sanctioning procedures.

AP
By Associated Press, 03 July 2018

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