The evaluation of the Abortion Act that gives access to dual abortion, has raised difficult ethical questions, said Prime Minister Erna Solberg during question time in Parliament.
The Kristelig Folkeparti (Christian Democratic Party – KrF) leader, Knut Arild Hareide, wanted to know whether the issue of access to abortion for a twin had been a clean, legislative assessment of abortion law, or whether there had additionally been an ethical assessment of whether to say yes or no to the abortion of a twin in Norway.
‘This is an ethically difficult issue. One that has been, for many years, existent without being dealt with, and this government decided that we had to complete the process of dealing with it.
We asked the Department of Justice for an assessment of the current abortion laws to look at the legal basis for foetal reduction in the event of pregnancy with twins.
The Legislation Department carried out a review of the requirements for an abortion’s legality, and they said very clearly that the current law permits that such abortions could be legally carried out’, said Solberg.
She added that the law cannot be construed as limiting the access to selective abortion within the first twelve weeks of pregnancy.
‘It is not a political, or ethical treatment of the issue by the government, but an understanding of the current law. The alternative would have been to promote a change in abortion law, which the government does not want to do’, said Solberg.
She also referred to statements about the risk to the second foetus during foetal reduction operations, and noted that the law opens the possibility for it also to be possible to carry out interventions in the 13th week of pregnancy. Solberg also believes that it is the pregnant women themselves who must make the assessment of whether to undergo the abortion of one foetus in a twin pregnancy.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today