Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Abortions are now legal in Portugal

but Most Doctors Refuse to Do Them Survey Shows
Lisbon, Portugal (LifeNews.com) --
Portugal became the latest nation to legalize abortions when its new abortion law went into effect on Sunday. However a survey shows that 80 percent of the physicians in the overwhelmingly Catholic nation refuse to do them. According to the Fides news service, Manuel Cruz, the head of the pro-life group Life Foundation, said, "Abortion is the worst distortion of medicine because a doctor vows to cure not to kill. This explains the widespread movement of objection of conscience among Portugal's doctors." Meanwhile, Msgr. Carlos Alberto Moreira di Azevedo, a spokesman for the Catholic bishops conference, told Fides that "Catholic nurses and doctors have been encouraged to have recourse to their right to objection of conscience and many have done so." He added: "This comes as a surprise to the government, -- many hospitals will not be able to perform abortions because so many doctors are having recourse to their right to objection of conscience." The new abortion law allows tem though the 10th week of pregnancy although it faces two legal challenges at the Constitutional Court by Portugal's Pro-Life Movement and the legislative assembly of the autonomous region of Madeira. The regional government refuses to allow the law to go into effect there until the courts rule whether it's constitutional. Portugal’s parliament approved the new abortion law after voters failed to approve it on the ballot. Ore than half of the nation failed to vote and only a small percentage of the overall population actually voted to legalize abortion. Under the new law, abortions will be paid for under the nation's health insurance system and women wanting abortions must get the okay from two doctors and go through a three day waiting period beforehand.

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