VILNIUS – Lithuanian lawmakers on Thursday rejected a proposal by Morgana Daniele, a member of the Freedom Party group, which is part of the ruling coalition, to allow artificial insemination procedures for unmarried couples and single women.
40 MPs gave their initial backing to the amendments, 42 voted against and 21 abstained. A separate vote then returned the bill to its initiators for further development.
Daniele said the amendments would allow couples or single women who currently do not have access to artificial insemination services to have children. The MP also pointed out that couples and women now travel to Riga where such procedures are allowed even for unmarried couples.
As some MPs criticized the initiative for opening the way for homosexual couples to have children, Daniele argued that two women living together currently have the opportunity to have children by using artificial insemination services abroad, and such families do exist.
Currently, the artificial insemination law in Lithuania stipulates that artificial insemination can only be carried out using the gametes of the woman to be inseminated and her cohabitating spouse or partner, except for certain cases, and it also states that the couple must have a registered partnership agreement, which is not yet legalized in Lithuania.
After much debate, the artificial insemination law was adopted in Lithuanian in 2016 and came into force in the spring of 2017. Such services became covered by the Compulsory Health Insurance Fund and have been used by several thousand couples.
The Seimas initially mandated the indefinite storage of embryos created for artificial insemination, but it scrapped the requirement last year.