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RIGHTS > Abortion ban will lead to more deaths for women, says UN official

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Zahidul Huque. AA Photo

Zahidul Huque. AA Photo

A possible abortion ban in Turkey would lead to more deaths for women who will have to resort to unsafe methods to end unwanted pregnancies, Turkey's U.N. Population Fund Representative recently told BBC Türkçe.
 
New regulations that would only abortions to be conducted in the first four weeks of pregnancy would make it nearly impossible for women to conduct an abortion since it is extremely difficult to detect a pregnancy within that period of time, Zahidul Huque said in an interview with BBC Türkçe.
 
Such a law would force women to resort to help from "providers without the necessary skills and equipment," Huque said, citing Romania's track record in which there was a drastic increase in maternal deaths and post-abortion cost that followed a 1966 law that banned abortions in the country.
 
Turkish women also experienced similar adverse problems in the 1970s, when abortion was heavily restricted by law, he said. According to Huque, a 1983 law allowing abortions "reduced women's suffering significantly" while also initiating a decrease in the number of pregnancies that were ended because the law was coupled with better teachings on modern contraceptives.
 
Correct approach is not legal or moral
 
Huque dismissed "legal interdictions or moral condemnation" as improper ways of dealing with the issue of abortion and instead advised governments to take a "human rights approach."
 
Governments should promote women's freedom over their sexual lives and provide them with the necessary means to make healthy and responsible choices in their lives, he said, adding that efficient post-abortion care should be provided regardless of the legal state of abortion in the country.
 
Abortion as a method of family planning endangers lives
 
Huque, however, ruled out abortion as a method of family planning.
 
Abortion should be replaced with "affordable and acceptable" modern contraception and education, Huque said, adding that that would help men and women make informed decisions about their lives. 
 
"Pregnancies that are wanted, safe motherhood and healthy families that are supported by communities and governments are at the heart of a successful population policy,” he said.

June/01/2012

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american american

6/6/2012 4:44:28 PM

why is abortion not ok, but constantly running red lights, driving motorcycles on the sidewalk, and making signaless abrupt turns not even an issue?

sid solo

6/2/2012 12:08:35 AM

Sad times. Instead of tackling the causes that drive women to abortion, they criminalise the act and thereby the women. In which democratic country can a minister make statements such as "the state can look after the children caused by rape" ? It not only lacks empathy but displays total ignorance for the scientific research in this field. Soon they will declare (probably by Islamic fetva) that if a woman doesn't wear a hicab, then she is acting against the Islamic laws and is a criminal?

Ahmetcan Caglayan

6/1/2012 11:23:44 PM

Abortion is murder, killing innocent babies is murder. This has nothing to do with religion. Why is it ok to kill babies, but not convicted rapists, murderers, and violent cons?

Richard Dickens

6/1/2012 7:20:26 PM

What comes next? Hmm, well, probably a speech or a kind of advice (warning) by UNICEF...

Thessalonian

6/1/2012 6:25:26 PM

You do not need the UN to tell you this! Many of us peons have said it in submitted comments over and over. Now it would be a good time to bring this government down from its Islamic throne while you still can...Regards

mara mcglothin

6/1/2012 6:07:48 PM

And it will be the most downtrodden women in society to be sure! It won't be the "secular elitist" that have a house in Paris and one in Miami. Very sad state of affairs. It is up to the women of Turkey to unite behind this issue and take care of business. Time to stop being a permanent doormat for the male mentality of Turkey.
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