The Hungarian government took action to protect unborn babies from abortion Monday through a new order requiring abortion providers to allow mothers to listen to their unborn baby’s heartbeat.
The Associated Press reports the pro-life decree will go into effect Thursday, ensuring that every mother seeking an abortion will receive information about “clearly identifiable indication of fetal vital signs” before she makes a final decision about her unborn baby’s life.
MP Dora Duro, a pro-life lawmaker with the Our Homeland party, celebrated the action Tuesday, saying they have struggled for decades to enact protections for unborn babies in Hungary.
Now, “there will be at least a few seconds when an unborn child can communicate with her mother before an abortion by listening to her heartbeat,” Duro wrote on Facebook.
In 1956, under socialist power, Hungary legalized the killing of unborn babies in abortions for any reason in the first trimester. Since then, more than 6 million unborn babies have been aborted.
Recently, however, Hungarians have elected more conservative leaders, including Duro, Prime Minister Viktor Orban and its first female president, Katalin Novak, who support unborn babies’ right to life and other family values. Along with the pro-life decree, the government also has increased tax breaks and other measures to support families with children, according to the AP.
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In 2011, the European country approved an amendment to its constitution declaring that “the life of a fetus will be protected from conception.” However, abortions are still legal.
Duro said she hopes the decree Monday will spur even more actions to protect unborn babies.
“This step has taken place for the first time since abortion was regulated in 1956, breaking a taboo for many decades …” she said. “History in the making!”
She also thanked Dr. Imre Teglasy, a pro-life leader and president of the Alpha Association, for his help advocating for the measure. Teglasy is an abortion survivor, and his organization has helped more than 43,000 mothers choose life for their unborn babies.
Most European countries allow abortion on demand through the first trimester but protect unborn babies after that point. Poland and Malta protect unborn babies by banning abortions, and, until three years ago, Ireland and Northern Ireland did, too.
Meanwhile, the United States under Roe v. Wade forced states to legalize abortions for any reason through the second trimester and allowed abortions up to birth. Now that Roe is gone, 15 states protect unborn babies by banning or strictly limiting abortions, and eight more are fighting to do the same.