State Must Make Abortion Available, Centre-left Opposition Says

Total Croatia News

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Image: Pixabay
Image: Pixabay

“A woman has the right to reproductive health, quality and available healthcare, information and self-determination, and public healthcare must provide her with everything the law guarantees”, Sabina Glasovac of the SDP said, presenting the bill.

“It is a woman’s right to plan a family, choose if, when and with whom to start a family or give birth as well as whether she will terminate a pregnancy”, she added.

The state must ensure legal, safe and quality medical pregnancy termination per request, and a woman should be provided with all the necessary, accurate and scientifically-based information, according to the bill.

It says that all authorised public hospitals must ensure, without delay, questioning or obstruction, pregnancy termination at a woman’s request until the end of the 12th week of gestation, and in specific legal situations after that.

The costs of pregnancy termination should be covered by the state and hospitals must ensure a sufficient number of doctors who do not refuse to perform the procedure, or be fined up to HRK 500,000.

Ivana Posavec Krivec of the Social Democrats called on the government and the ruling majority to endorse the bill and prevent the further erosion of women’s rights.

The 1978 abortion law which is in force is the minimum civilisational achievement which should be amended due to developments in science, medicine and WHO guidelines, she added.

Urša Raukar Gamulin of the Green-Left Bloc said it was necessary to respect the law, the Constitution and the Constitutional Court, which decided in 2017 that a new abortion law must be passed in two years’ time.

“We will fight for abortion in Croatia to be safe, legal, available, free and painless. We acknowledge conscientious objection, but every hospital’s management has the duty to ensure abortion regardless of conscientious objection”, she added.

“We don’t advocate abortion but a woman’s right to decide about her body and respect the law”, said Krešo Beljak of the Croatian Peasant Party, adding that doctors who invoke conscientious objection are hypocrites because they don’t invoke it in private hospitals.

“We live in a secular state and will fight with every political means for Croatia not to fall into the hands of ultra-conservatives, quasi-believers and liars who, for personal gain, are trying to return Croatia to the Middle Ages”, said Beljak.

Anka Mrak Taritaš of GLAS said this was a civilisational, not a world-view issue because deciding on abortion is the exclusive right of a woman and her family.

Dalija Orešković of the Centre party said it was unacceptable that any authorities would refuse to execute a Constitutional Court decision. It’s a negation of the state and the rule of law, it’s the (ruling) HDZ’s violence against institutions, she added.

We know the HDZ won’t support this bill, so our primary battle is not to allow the HDZ to negate the rights that exist in the law. No woman in Croatia must ever again feel humiliated and shamed when deciding on her legal rights, which don’t exist in practice because Croatia is run by parallel interest groups, including the Church, said Orešković.

Katarina Nemet of the Istrian Democratic Party said they would support the bill as acquired human and civil rights, notably women’s right to choose, should be viewed as a civilisational minimum.

For more, check out our politics and lifestyle sections.


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