Thousands of Poles Protest After Death Linked to Abortion Law
(Bloomberg) -- Thousands took to the streets in Poland on Saturday to protest the nation’s stringent abortion law and pay tribute to a woman who died after doctors refrained from ending her life-threatening pregnancy.
The woman, who was carrying a 22-week fetus with congenital malformations, died of septic shock in September after doctors declined to end her pregnancy until the fetus died, according to lawyers representing her family.
Last year’s ruling by Poland’s Constitutional Tribunal, the country’s top court whose members are mainly ruling party appointees, said that abortions are unconstitutional even when the fetus can’t survive outside the womb. Passage of the law ended what had essentially been a near three-decade political truce on abortion, and fired up mass protests across the country.
It’s unclear how and whether the latest protests, dubbed “Not One More,” will affect Poland’s political situation. The marches attracted leaders of the opposition, including former European Council President Donald Tusk and Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski, as well as left-wing politicians.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said Friday the circumstances of the woman’s death in south Poland must be investigated, adding the Constitutional Tribunal’s ruling hasn’t changed anything in terms of protecting pregnant women whose lives are in danger.
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