Stricter abortion law in Slovakia is stirring passionate public debate

The far-right People's Party has proposed a draft law that will not allow abortions on demand. And many MPs across the spectrum are considering voting for it.

Ria Gehrerová
Ria Gehrerová Denník N, Slovakia
Source: Denník N
Stricter abortion law in Slovakia is stirring passionate public debate - NewsMavens
Marian Kotleba, WikICommons

Why this story matters:

When neo-Nazi Marian Kotleba entered the parliament with his party, most politicians refused to form a coalition with him, vote for his draft bills or even debate with him.

However, Kotleba recently came up with an issue that many MPs cannot resist and overlook -- abortion. And many Catholic politicians across the political spectrum are considering supporting his law on tightening restrictions on abortion.

Political parties will not vote uniformly and MPs can vote according to their beliefs. Few have announced their intentions thus far, but the law could very well get a second reading. The vote is scheduled to take place in the upcoming days.

It is worth noting that Kotleba's draft law was inspired by neighboring Poland's current abortion ban. If the law comes to pass, it will be a further blow to reproductive rights in the area, since many Polish women come to Slovakia to receive abortions. 

Details from the story:

  • The current abortion rate is the lowest in Slovak history. Most abortions were carried out in the 1990s.
  • The only two parties which refuse to vote for Kotleba's draft law are SaS (Freedom and Solidarity) and Spolu (Together).
  • The current law enables woman to have an abortion on demand up to 12 weeks. She can also have an abortion when in risk of her life, health or in case of fetal defects up to 24 weeks.
  • Some priests and conservative Christian activists have already supported Kotleba's draft bill. They also plan a protest in front of the parliament on Tuesday.

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