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Thousands protest against Polish abortion laws


1000’s of Poles took half in vigils and marches on Saturday following the loss of life of a pregnant girl whose case has reignited a debate in regards to the nation’s extremely restrictive abortion legal guidelines.

Within the capital Warsaw, hundreds marched by way of the town centre, bearing placards with slogans reminiscent of “My physique, my alternative”, and “It may have been any of us”, and chanting “Not one girl extra”, and “Disgrace!”

Smaller protests and marches additionally befell in different cities and cities, together with Gdansk, Wroclaw, Szczecin and Pszczyna, the city in southern Poland the place the girl died.

The 30-year-old, recognized solely as Izabela, died after going to hospital in her twenty second week of being pregnant when her waters broke. Her household stated in a press release that she had informed them that docs waited for her unborn child, which had congenital defects, to die moderately than carry out an abortion. The foetus died, and after lower than 24 hours in hospital Izabela died from septic shock.

Izabela’s loss of life follows a controversial ruling final yr by Poland’s constitutional tribunal {that a} 1993 regulation permitting abortions within the case of extreme foetal abnormalities was unconstitutional.

The ruling, which sparked big protests throughout the nation, tightened what had been already a number of the most restrictive abortion legal guidelines within the EU and left solely two grounds for a termination: a risk to the mom’s well being or if the being pregnant is a results of rape or incest.

© Agencja Wyborcza.pl by way of REUTERS

Politicians from the ruling conservative-nationalist Regulation and Justice social gathering, which has shut hyperlinks to Poland’s influential Catholic church, stated that these guidelines wouldn’t have prevented an abortion from being carried out in Izabela’s case.

“If the life or well being of the mom is threatened then an abortion remains to be attainable, and right here nothing has modified,” Mateusz Morawiecki, Poland’s prime minister, stated this week.

Nevertheless, ladies’s rights activists say that the tightening of the legal guidelines has made docs afraid of finishing up abortions, even when there’s a danger to the mom’s life.

“The scenario is getting worse and worse . . . By slowly taking away ladies’s rights step-by-step, they’re being taken away fully,” stated Ola Wlodarczyk, a 32-year previous who joined the march in central Warsaw.

“We wish our rights, our rights to our personal our bodies, again. The precise to abortion is a elementary human proper . . . [This case shows] that these aren’t simply slogans on placards and empty chants on the streets. It has a direct impression on ladies’s life and well being.”

The hospital in Pszczyna stated on Friday that two docs who had been on responsibility whereas Izabela was within the hospital had been suspended.

In an earlier assertion, it stated that “all medical choices had been made making an allowance for the authorized provisions and requirements of conduct in drive in Poland”.

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