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China law threatens jail for doctors aiding gender-based abortions

[JURIST] State media in China said Monday that a revised Chinese law submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) [Wikipedia backgrounder] calls for prison sentences of up to three years and heavy fines for doctors and other health workers who aid in telling the gender of unborn babies, leading to abortions. The new law is aimed at preventing the selection of a child's gender, when not conducted for strictly medical purposes. A traditional preference for sons in China [HK Weekly Standard report] intensified after a one-child policy was introduced to curb China's rapidly growing population, currently over 1.3 billion. The boy to girl ratio in China now stands at 1.19 to 1, markedly higher than the world standard of 1.06 to 1. China hopes to correct its gender imbalance by 2010. Reuters has more. China Daily has local coverage.

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