The Spanish government has announced plans to legalise abortion in the country. The current law, dating from 1985 only allows terminations in very limited instances.
Under the new legislation, women, including girls under 16, would be free to terminate a pregnancy up to 14 weeks after conception. But voices have been raised against the proposed law from Spain’s Catholic church and conservative groups, including the opposition Popular Party. It fears a legal change will lead to a large increase in terminations. Spain’s government is also committed to making the contraceptive morning-after pill available over the counter in pharmacies without prescription. Spain’s Health Minister, Trinidad Jiménez defended the measures. “These actions are part of a global vision with different actions like education, information and better access to contraception,” he said. Spain’s government says statistics from other countries reveal that when the morning-after pill is available over the counter it helps reduce significantly the number of abortions.