Over at another Reuters blog, Ask… , my London-based colleague Michael Holden has put the spotlight on a growing debate in Britain about the 40-year-old abortion law there. The law has come under increasing fire in recent years from anti-abortion activists, who say medical advances mean a foetus born before the 24-week limit can survive and the limit should therefore be reduced. At the same time, pro-abortion activists want to change the law to make it easier to obtain an abortion by dropping the requirement that two doctors agree to the procedure.
Michael’s post asks: Abortion – time for a change?
October 24th, 2007, filed by Michael Holden
The highly charged issue of abortion is once again becoming a hot political issue.
Ever since terminations were legalised in1967, there has been heated debate between those who argue that abortions are morally wrong and those who say it is a woman’s right to choose whether to have a baby.
Then there are the medical issues. Doctors support maintaining the 24-week upper limit for abortions, arguing that is the point at which a foetus is considered viable. However others say scientific advances mean this is no longer the case and this limit should be reduced.
Last year the number of abortions rose by 4 percent and Lord Steel, who brought forward the original Abortion Act as a young MP, has voiced his concern that there are too many terminations nowadays and some women are acting irresponsibly.