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Abortions funded by state under fire

Jul 30, 2008
In cooperation with BNS

TALLINN - Financing of abortions on demand from the state budget is not justified, sayYoung Conservatives, the youth branch of Estonia's Pro Patria and Res Publica Union.

Financing abortions performed without medical necessity or the abortions on demand from the state budget is on the constitutionally and legally impermissible and politically unjustified, the association said in a statement.

Every year millions of kroons of taxpayers' money is spent to support a practice that ignores the most fundamental human rights and is destructive to the Estonian nation, Young Conservatives said.

They pointed out that 9,378 abortions on demand were performed in Estonia in 2006 and the Health Insurance Fund paid 1,578.5 kroons (EUR 101) for each procedure or 70 percent of its cost. Thus, the state spent more than 14.5 million kroons to fund abortions that year.

Apart from constitutional arguments, the Young Conservatives also see that the fact is it is not appropriate for the state to finance medical procedures performed without medical justification speaks against public funding of abortions.

As the Young Conservatives see it, such use of the taxpayers' money is unacceptable. In their words, the funds were better spent on devising and implementing in schools an efficient family planning program.

In the association's view, the concept of mandatory pre-abortion counseling should be reviewed and the counseling made more effective.

They also called for developing an effective adoption system to bring together the needs of unborn children and childless couples longing for a child.

Estonia needs a more general public discussion of abortion-related issues, Young Conservatives added. One question it should address is how the state could fulfill its constitutional duty to ensure effective protection of the right to life of the unborn.

"In the present situation, with Estonia having one of the highest abortion rates in the world, there can be no talk of fulfilling this obligation," Young Conservatives said. "The first step that should be taken towards rectifying this situation is making an end of the unconstitutional public funding of abortions."
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