.- The Spanish Senate voted Wednesday to pass the Socialist governmentâs new law on abortion. The decision will allow women over the age of 16 to obtain the procedure up until the 14th week of pregnancy.
The new law, which will go into effect in four months, was passed by a vote of 132-126. Members of the Socialist government, including Bibiana Aido, Minister of Equality, Trinidad Jimenez, Minister of Health, and Francisco Caamano, Minister of Justice, celebrated the outcome as âa great victory.â
For girls under the age of 16, the law states they must inform at least one parent or guardian of their desire to have an abortion, unless they can prove this would put them in physical danger.
Ironically, during his remarks at the World Congress against the death penalty being held this week in Geneva, Spanish President Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who supports abortion, said, âNobody has the right to take the life of another human being - absolutely nobody.â
Following the passage of the law, the spokesperson for the Popular Party, Carmen Duenas, accused the Socialist government of both âimposing abortion on demandâ on Spanish society and for having âscornâ for âthe voice of the people,â who reject the law âby a clear majority.â
Duenas also slammed President Zapateroâs cabinet for wanting to âdo away with the family, one of the pillars of Spanish societyâ and for âleaving life unprotected.â
âThey are already destroying our countryâs present; let them not destroy the future as well.
She also criticized the decision for âletting men off the hook from their responsibilitiesâ and for placing abortion over motherhood. She added, âand you call that historic achievement, social advancement, progress and feminism. If anything itâs backwards and outdated feminism.â
On various occasions, the Bishopsâ Conference of Spain and many individual bishops expressed their firm rejection of the new law, calling it a âserious step backwardâ in the protection of the unborn.â
âThe state is calling something a right which, is actually an attack on the fundamental right to life,â the bishops said. âThe protection of the fundamental good of human life and of the right to life are essential obligations of those in authority.â
âThe inclusion of abortion among the instruments necessary for health care is in and of itself a grave falsity. Medicine is supposed to prevent illness or cure it. Pregnancy will never be an illness, even though it might entail complications to oneâs health, be unplanned or even the result of violence.
âFor this reason, abortion is never healing, it is always killing,â the bishops concluded.