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Portugal parliament approves loosening abortion restrictions

[JURIST] Portugal's parliament, the Assembly of the Republic [official website, Portuguese], loosened Portugal's strict abortion law [text, Portuguese; JURIST news archive] Thursday to allow abortions in the first 10-weeks of pregnancy. The legislation still requires the endorsement of President Anibal Cavaco Silva [official profile] to come into effect.

In February, Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates [official profile] said he would look the Assembly to pass liberalizing abortion legislation [JURIST report] after the failure of a general referendum [JURIST report] on the issue due to low turnout. Previous law allowed abortions only in order to save the life of the mother, in rape cases, or if the baby will be born with a deformity or incurable disease. Reuters has more.

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