Today in Strasbourg MEPs from various political groups staged a protest against a draft proposal by the Spanish government to revoke current legislation and replace it with a restrictive abortion law “protecting the rights of the unborn child and pregnant women”. The government is set to present the proposal in the coming days.

“The strong influence of the most reactionary forces of the Catholic Church in Spain over the Government is clearly behind this draft law,” said Spanish GUE/NGL MEP Angela Vallina. “If this enters into force in Spain it will represent a significant setback for women's rights, to the times of Franco’s dictatorship. Those women who can afford it will travel abroad to have a safe and legal abortion. However, most working, unemployed women will be forced to give birth or resort to having a “backstreet” illegal abortion at grave risk to their health.”

The proposed draft will only allow abortion only under two very restrictive conditions: rape or serious health risk to women. It would also put an end to the possibility for young women (16 to 18 years) to decide to carry out an abortion without parental authorisation. Any abortion carried out which does not fall under the two permitted categories would be considered a crime, both for the woman undergoing the procedure and the health professionals involved.

More photos available here:

The GUE/NGL group is made up of 52 MEPs from across Europe working for peace, solidarity, social justice, equality, democracy and human rights in Europe and beyond. It is the only gender balanced group in the European Parliament, with 26 women and 26 men.

GUE/NGL Press:
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08

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