Government Denies Intention to Change Abortion Law

Total Croatia News

Foreign Minister Stier says the government will not outlaw abortion.

“I absolutely reject allegations that the government will change the law on abortion”, said on Monday Croatia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Davor Ivo Stier in Geneva, where he participates in the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council, reports on February 27, 2017.

During the weekend, media reported on a draft conclusions of the Foreign Affairs of the European Union about EU’s priorities in the UN human rights bodies in 2017. Croatia, Hungary and Poland have taken the conservative stance in the debate on human rights within the Council of the European Union, and judging by these new Croatian positions, the abortion is not considered to be an unquestionable right of women.

The document shows that new priorities of Croatian foreign policy, when it comes to human rights, are based on protection of the rights of believers and the right to religion and the protection of the family.

The government led by Andrej Plenković has not yet reacted to the disclosure of the document, which came from the ministry in which Ladislav Iličić was recently appointed as an advisor. Iličić is a well-known conservative activist. The document also states that “Croatia notes that the term ‘sexual and reproductive health and rights’ has no uniform definition at the international level, including at the EU level. In this sense, Croatia interprets the term in a way that it does not include abortion”.

Over the weekend and on Monday, opposition parties SDP and HNS expressed their concern about such positions and called them a radical change in policies towards women’s rights and abortion rights.

On Monday, Stier did not deny that the document existed, but said that Croatia was now expanding its activities in the protection of human rights. “As far as our credibility, we now advocate the position which we talked about during the election campaign. The positions of HDZ about the protection of life and the definition of marriage are well known”, said Stier. Prime Minister Plenković repeatedly stressed that the law on abortion would not be amended and that position has not changed. The law currently makes abortion in Croatia legal.

Stier said that the government requested protection of Christians and other religious minorities in countries where religious freedoms are not respected.

“Unfortunately, there are still some countries where homosexuality is a crime. We have demanded the decriminalization of homosexuality because we believe that it is necessary to respect the human dignity of every person, including LGBT people”, said Stier, adding that the government was committed to stopping violence against women and girls as well.


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