A viable, late-term unborn baby who is capable of feeling pain may be killed this week after a court in India granted the mother’s request for an abortion.
Last week, the mother asked the Delhi High Court for permission to have a late-term abortion after her unborn child was diagnosed with disabilities, and, on Tuesday, the court ruled in the woman’s favor, The Hindu reports.
The woman is at least 24-weeks pregnant with her unborn baby, according to the report. Babies are viable outside the womb at about 22 weeks.
India prohibits abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. In recent years, however, courts have been granting numerous exceptions to the law for victims of rape and unborn babies with disabilities.
According to the report, the unborn baby in the latest case was diagnosed with hydrocephalus and a facial hemorrhage. Though a medical report submitted to the court suggested that a late-term abortion may pose risks to the mother’s life because she has heart problems and takes blood thinner medication, the court granted permission anyway, the report states.
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The mother and her lawyers argued that late-term abortions are safe for women because of modern medical technology, according to the report. They also claimed that giving birth to a live baby could cause her “to suffer excruciating pain and agony.”
But abortions involve two lives, not just one, and late-term abortions can be deadly to mothers as well as their unborn babies. Whether a woman gives birth or aborts her unborn baby, she still has to go through labor and delivery. The main difference is that in a late-term abortion, the unborn baby is already dead. A third-trimester abortion typically involves injecting a poisonous potassium chloride solution through the woman’s stomach into the baby’s heart – causing excruciating pain to the baby as the poison stops his/her heart. A few days later, labor is induced and the woman delivers her dead baby’s body.
Late-term abortions also are dangerous for mothers. Even abortion advocacy groups admit that the risks of abortion increase greatly later in pregnancy, and women sometimes die along with their unborn babies.
India has some of the highest abortion numbers in the world. Approximately 15.6 million unborn babies were aborted in the country in 2015, according to the Guttmacher Institute.
Below is an image of an unborn baby in an ultrasound scan at 24 weeks.