Cyprus lawmakers caved into pro-abortion political pressure and legalized abortion on Good Friday.
The Cyprus Mail Online reports the small island nation’s parliament voted 33 to eight to legalize abortion up to 12 weeks of pregnancy for any reason and up to 19 weeks in cases of rape. An additional five members of parliament abstained.
The new abortion law requires parental consent for minors and mandatory counseling, including sex education, according to the report.
Good Friday is the day Christians remember Jesus Christ’s death on the cross as a sacrifice for their sins and, on Easter Sunday, his resurrection from the dead. The Church Militant recognized the tragic irony of the vote.
Though Cyprus is a strongly Catholic nation, the country’s leaders justified the legislation by pointing a scandal that broke last year involving illegal abortion practices on the island, according to the local news.
Just prior to the vote, Women in Support of Life sent small plastic fetal models and photos of aborted babies to members of parliament in hopes of persuading them to protect unborn babies’ rights, according to the local news.
Here’s more from the Church Militant:
Until Friday’s vote, Cyprus was home to some of Europe’s strongest pro-life laws.
Abortion was available only if the physical or psychological health of the woman was threatened and in cases of rape or fetal deformity. Doctors who performed abortions for other reasons were subject to up to 14 years imprisonment.
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In recent years, Cyprus has come under increasing international pressure to overturn its protections for the unborn. In 2016, for example, Dr. Arne Bjornberg, president of the Health Consumer Powerhouse (HCP), which produces the Euro Health Consumer Index annually, denounced Cypriot abortion policy as “bad both for human rights and for women’s health.”
Ireland also is scheduled to vote May 25 on whether to retain its Eighth Amendment, which protects unborn babies’ right to life. Abortion activists, backed by some of the world’s richest men, are pushing the pro-life country to legalize abortion on demand.
Poland and Malta, two other European countries that also protect unborn babies’ rights in most circumstances, also are being criticized by pro-abortion activists and international groups for not allowing women to abort unborn babies.