Citizen's draft liberalising abortion regulations in Sejm on Thursday

2016-08-03, 13:18 update: 2018-09-27, 02:46
Warszawa, 14.07.2016. Liderka Stowarzyszenia Inicjatywa Polska Barbara Nowacka, podczas konferencji prasowej Komitetu Inicjatywy Ustawodawczej Ratujmy Kobiety, 14 bm. (ls/nlat) PAP/Leszek Szymański Archiwum PAP © 2016 / Leszek Szymański
Warszawa, 14.07.2016. Liderka Stowarzyszenia Inicjatywa Polska Barbara Nowacka, podczas konferencji prasowej Komitetu Inicjatywy Ustawodawczej Ratujmy Kobiety, 14 bm. (ls/nlat) PAP/Leszek Szymański Archiwum PAP © 2016 / Leszek Szymański
A draft seeking to liberalise Poland's abortion laws prepared by the "Save the Women" Legislative Initiative Committee will reach the Sejm (lower house) on Thursday. The committee collected over 160,000 signatures under the draft.

Under the "Save the Women" draft, women are entitled to have an abortion up to 12 weeks into the pregnancy. After that abortion would be permissible along the same rules as those in effect today.

Additionally, in cases of severe and irreversible impairment of the foetus or an incurable disease, abortion would be permitted up to the 24th week. Abortion would be permissible up to the 18th week if the pregnancy is the result of a crime.

The proposed changes have been initiated by the Polish Initiative Association founded by former United Left leader Barbara Nowacka.

The committee will hold a press conference on Thursday. Later in the day the draft will be filed with the Sejm (lower house). 

A citizen's anti-abortion bill completely banning abortion and making it punishable by a prison term reached the Sejm in July.

Under Poland’s current abortion regulations, abortion is illegal except when the pregnancy poses a threat to the woman's health or life, if it results from a crime such as incest or rape, or when if there is a high probability that the foetus is severely and irreversibly deformed.

According to official Health Ministry statistics, fewer than 1,000 abortions are performed in Poland every year. In 2014, their official number stood at 977. Poland's NGOs believe that the number of abortions in Poland ranges from 80,000 to 190,000 annually. (PAP)

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