Abortion: Denmark will extend the legal time limit for abortion from twelve to eighteen weeks

Denmark will extend from twelve to eighteen weeks of pregnancy the legal deadline for recourse to voluntary termination of pregnancy (abortion), the Ministry of Health announced on Friday, May 3, while the right to abortion is contested in a number of countries

Abortion: Denmark will extend the legal time limit for abortion from twelve to eighteen weeks

Denmark will extend from twelve to eighteen weeks of pregnancy the legal deadline for recourse to voluntary termination of pregnancy (abortion), the Ministry of Health announced on Friday, May 3, while the right to abortion is contested in a number of countries.

“After fifty years, it is time for the rules on abortion to evolve and for us to strengthen women's right to self-determination,” said Danish Minister of the Interior and Health Sophie Lohde, quoted in a statement.

“Now women will have the time and the right to think about what needs to happen,” the president of the Danish Medical Association, Camilla Rathke, told the Ritzau news agency.

Additionally, Danish women aged 15 to 17 will have the right to have an abortion without parental consent.

While the right to abortion is contested and even banned in some parts of the world, it was introduced in Denmark in 1973; last fall, a majority of members of the Ethics Council recommended extending the deadline to eighteen weeks, as in Sweden. “A limit of eighteen weeks still leaves a considerable margin in relation to the viability [of the fetus] around week twenty-two,” the council had emphasized.

IVG in the Constitution in France

The bill, which is supported by the entire left-wing opposition, is to be presented to Parliament in the 2024-2025 session and is due to come into force on June 1, 2025.

Worldwide, 40% of women live in a country that restricts or prohibits the right to abortion, according to the American NGO Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), which has been observing legislative developments on abortion for thirty years. in the world.

In Western Europe, the time limit for abortion is twenty-four weeks in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands and twenty-two in Iceland.

Acquired since 1975 in France by the Veil law, the right to abortion was reinforced in March 2022 by a text which provides for the extension of the period to the fourteenth week of pregnancy. Meeting in Congress in Versailles on March 4, 2024, parliamentarians adopted the constitutional revision aimed at guaranteeing “the freedom” to have recourse to an abortion.

Despite everything, access to abortion remains fragile in practice: the use of abortion, on the rise in recent years, remains unequal depending on the profile or social level of women and the availability of structures near their location. of residence. The notion of “guaranteed freedom”, and not that of rights, has rekindled the question of the means allocated to this public health policy.