Australian Prime Minister calls for debate on abortion law

Following the release of recent statistics from the state of South Australia suggesting that the majority of women who have late-term abortions due to reasons of mental health, acting Prime Minister, John Anderson, has called for a debate on Australia’s late-term abortion policy.

It is time to "welcome a wider debate to re-examine our understanding of medical science and the law," said Mr. Anderson, according to a report Dennis Shanahan and Patricia Karvelas in The Australian.

However, he also said that any change in the law would have to reflect attitudes of the community, “from the bottom up.”

Some members of Australia’s Liberal party have backed a private member’s bill outlawing late-term abortions in two of the country’s territories, and Australia’s Health Minister Tony Abbot has called on Christians to build a political constituency against abortion.

Many MP’s are in favour of maintain the current law which permits late-term abortions, and few think there is any chance of the private member’s bill having any success.

The state of South Australia has released statistics revealing that due to a late discovery of pregnancy, the ending of a relationship, or embarking on a new job, women have aborted their healthy fetus after 20 to 22 weeks of pregnancy.  Over half of the 377 abortions carried out on these women were carried out because the pregnancy was considered detrimental to their mental health, stressful experiences or periods in their lives.

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