Academic Agnieszka Graff, lawyer Karolina Więckiewicz and gynaecologist Anna Parzyńska discuss their fight for abortion rights. An attempt by authorities to impose a near-total ban on terminations has sparked mass demonstrations across the country
Mon 14 Dec 2020
On 22 October, Poland’s constitutional court ruled to ban abortions in cases of congenital foetal defects, even if the foetus has no chance of survival. The decision by the court’s 15 pro-ruling party judges, many of them appointed unlawfully, would allow terminations only in instances of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is at risk – a tiny fraction of cases. Women’s groups estimate that an additional 200,000 Polish women have abortions either illegally or abroad each year – Poland has some of Europe’s strictest abortion laws.
Her baby could not possibly survive. Still they decided she should have it
Kasia Strek, Warsaw | Peter Conradi
Saturday November 07 2020
Sitting on a hard plastic seat in the corridor of the Bielanski Hospital in
north Warsaw last week, waiting for her abortion pill to take effect,
Malgorzata quietly recounted her struggle to get a termination for a foetal
abnomality in a country bitterly divided over the sanctity of unborn life.
While huge crowds have been on the streets to oppose a hardening of Poland’s already
strict abortion laws, Malgorzata has had to travel from hospital to hospital to
find one willing to help her.
It was six weeks ago, during the 12th week of her pregnancy, that the
34-year-old businesswoman learnt there was something wrong with the baby she
was carrying: it was too small, did not move much and there was an abnormality
in the jawbone.