Poland law allow abortion in the case of rape, incest or a threat to the mother’s health and life, which make up only around two per cent of legal terminations conducted in recent years cause of trigger to protest across Poland.
Early hours of Friday morning, protesters clashed with riot police outside the Warsaw home of Deputy Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, who heads the governing Law and Justice (PiS) party. Police said officers used pepper spray and physical force when some protesters threw stones and tried to push through the cordon around the house.
Opposition parties in Poland, the European Union’s human rights commissioner and international human rights organizations criticized the court’s decision as violating women’s rights. It leaves a pregnancy endangering a woman’s health or life, or resulting from rape or other illegal act as the only legal grounds for obtaining an abortion.
Outraged protesters were pepper-sprayed and physically forced away from #Polish Deputy PM Jaroslaw Kaczynski’s home by riot police.
It comes after #Poles were left reeling after a #courtruled ending the life of a deformed fetus to be unconstitutional.
The ruling means #abortion is almost banned in the predominantly #Catholic country, with termination now only allowed in cases of rape or incest, or to protect the mother’s life.
The #EU member state already had the strictest abortion laws on the continent, with an estimated 100,000 women seeking #termination abroad each year to escape the tight restrictions.
Krakow, #Lodz and #Szczecin all saw their streets filled with demonstrators opposed to the ruling. Despite public gatherings in #Warsaw being limited to 10 people due to the distance rule #coronavirus restrictions, the city saw hundreds of people march from the court to the home of #Kaczynski, who heads the governing Law and #Justice party. Some 15 people were detained at the #protest.
Polish celebrities used their social media platforms to highlight their indignation at the stricter laws. #Athletes including Ewa Swoboda, Młociarka Malwina Kopron and Katarzyna Skorupa shared #cartoons depicting female oppression by the state, with comments like ‘Women’s Hell’ and ‘Only he has the right to decide about her body.’
One illustration depicted Kaczynski observing a #woman giving birth, along with the comment: ‘You have nothing to say about giving birth.’