Center For Reproductive Rights Condemns Harmful Anti-Choice Comments By Turkish Prime Minister
The Center for Reproductive Rights has joined international and local women’s rights advocates in strongly condemning Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s recent public comments comparing abortion to murder and calling on the Minister of Health to impose new, more restrictive abortion laws in Turkey.
“Prime Minister Erdoğan’s recent comments display a complete disregard for the lives and health of Turkish women,” said Lilian Sepúlveda, director of the global legal program at the Center for Reproductive Rights. “There are serious and dire consequences for women when abortion is severely restricted, and any attempt to dial back women’s reproductive rights in Turkey will put their fundamental human rights at risk.”
Abortion has been legal in Turkey since 1983, allowing women to terminate a pregnancy in the first 10 weeks. Thereafter, a legal abortion is permitted only to save the life or health of the pregnant woman and in cases of fetal impairment.
Additionally, Turkey has committed to regional and international human rights standards —such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women—that call for women and adolescent girls to have access to a full range of sexual and reproductive health services, including abortion services.
Any attempts to restrict the current law would place Turkish women's lives and health at risk by forcing them to undergo unsafe procedures and violate the government’s human rights obligations to establish and implement protocols and procedures to ensure the accessibility and availability of safe abortion services.
More information about abortion restrictions around the globe is available at CRR’s interactive World Abortion Laws map.