Poland's Top Court Tightens Strict Abortion Laws

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Loose. Highest Court has ruled that the only circumstances in which a woman may have an abortion is in the case of rape incest or if there is a threat to the mother's life, the EU has reacted swiftly saying such a decision is tantamount to a ban on terminations and such a violation of human rights which could put women's lives at risk. Tell us more. We Cross over to Warsaw. Now to join Joe Johanna pretends guy who's a political journalist for Reuters welcome back to the show you Hannah. Thanks for having to explain to us how did we get to this point where the the Polish Supreme Court with voting on abortion rights? So. Abortion has been a debate that's been ongoing in Poland for many years now, and it's not the first time that we're seeing women on the streets. Protesting limiting abortion rights in, Poland. But the accusation is that the Polish government, the ruling nationalist and decided that it should be ruled on as through the courts and not through parliament because it would potentially limit broader discussion about this at now, of course, the ruling government has not said that, but that if the accusation from opposition activists that by avoiding public debate in parliament on, this is just kind of sets the decision in stone by taking through the courts and the reaction has been pretty clear. This weekend we've seen protesters disrupting church services. We've had sit-ins. It's it's been very clear. What many women think Yeah absolutely I think. Every single day since the decision was made, there have been thousands of people, thousands of people on the street in all parts, of Paul, and not just in Warsaw and I think the protests are expected to continue this week. And tell us a little bit more about how the government has responded to this. I think the government is defending the stance in there. Saying this is a decision by a court. It carries weight and I you know this confirms a lot of the socially conservative values that said the law and Justice Party that's in charge in Poland has been seeking to confirm since it came to power in two thousand fifteen. I'm just tell us a little bit more. About some are saying that so many protests having being held in. Churches. I. Think many protesters staging sit ins at Sunday mass, and what have you and it's suggested that the Catholic church is Fall to involved in government policy in Poland could you explain that for us? So the ruling party does have a very close relationship with the church at the Catholic Church in Poland in many ways is more conservative than the Vatican and it really has been kind of the pinnacle a confirming socially conservative values on issues such as abortion, but also another issue such as the civil partnerships fraud ubt people So the church really death play a key role in kind of helping to confirm this world view that the law and Justice Party has been trying to. Confirm as well at through through its time in power and I think that's why people went to church on Sunday in protested because they felt that the church is a key part of this decision that this institution that really works hand in hand with the ruling party. One thing that people have suggested is that the European Union must step in more clearly here and so far as if it is seen as an attack on women's rights. It must act against one of its member nations. But unfortunately, we've seen what the European Union be things take a long time and I think that. It's. The European hasn't taken strong action in a lot of other cases I. mean the debate on the rule of law is still ongoing in the EU add. There's constantly discussions about how to place limitations on Poland, but I think the government has sense that not a lot of concrete action has actually been taken and I would say many critics say that the consequences from the European Union don't seem to be swift or strict enough. In data I mean look Poland has got a track record of having long debt running speech the you about attacks, judicial independence, human rights, the freedom of the press. What point do you think that there will be intervention for by the European? Union or is there just an acceptance in Poland that the EU will take action, but it is indeed to slow northern effective. I mean, there was a discussion. There is an ongoing discussion in the European Union about linking. Issues not just rule of law, but also anything that violates the treaties. With EU funding and I think that's a discussion that will continue for quite some time. This was something we saw what the whole at discussion the summer about the lgbt ideology-free downs if there was a way to cut funding from the European Union to those areas that declare themselves, lgbt ideology-free and I think you know the issue of abortion will also be part of that broader debate. So I'm sure the European Union is is likely to continue to discuss this to vocally condemn it and try to find a way to to take action. But it's just a matter of when that will happen and with what strength that will happen

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