Morocco to bar Dutch abortion ship

2012-10-04 09:11

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Rabat - Morocco's government said the Dutch "abortion boat", due to arrive on Thursday in the first such trip to a Muslim country, is not authorised to act and must be prevented from doing so.

Women on Waves, the Dutch group organising the trip, said earlier that the ship, which is equipped to provide women with the medication needed for "safe legal medical abortions" up to six and a half weeks into pregnancy, would arrive at 13:00 GMT on Thursday.

It was due to land at Smir, on Morocco's Mediterranean coast, about 40km east of Tangier.

In the first official response to the planned visit, the health ministry on Wednesday urged the relevant authorities to prevent the visit from taking place.

"The ministry of health... has never been informed of this event and has not authorised any non-resident party or doctor in Morocco to carry out this medical intervention," it said in a statement.

"The ministry calls on the relevant authorities to do what it is necessary to ensure that the law is applied," it added.

Moroccan law prohibits abortion, except when the life of the mother is in danger.

Women on Waves said the purpose of the visit was to provide abortions to women that might otherwise be exposed to grave health risks, and planned to set up a hotline to inform women about how to induce medical abortions safely at home.

Doctor Rebecca Gomperts, the Dutch group's founder, told AFP that around 600 to 800 Moroccan women have an abortion every day.

Pro-life groups


"The problem is that only about 200 cases are done properly, by women who have money," she said, with the rest resorting to dangerous methods because they are unable to afford the more expensive treatment.

This leads to the deaths of 78 Moroccan women each year on average, Gomperts claimed, citing statistics provided by the World Health Organisation.

In the past 11 years, a Women on Waves ship has visited Ireland, Poland, Portugal and Spain, sparking protests in each country from pro-life groups.

Ordinary Moroccans on Wednesday voiced strong opposition to the visit, which local youth group the Alternative Movement for Individual Liberties (MALI) has helped to organise.

"Moroccan law forbids abortion. Moroccan religious identity says it is forbidden and so does Islam. So the government cannot allow this ship to come to Morocco," lawyer Abdelmalik Zaza was quoted as saying in Al-Tajdid, the newspaper of ruling Islamist party the PJD.

Hannan Idrissi, a member of a Moroccan pro-life group, said the abortion figures given by Gomperts were incorrect, and disputed the motives of the MALI youth group.

"The Mali movement that invited the ship is known for its disrespect for ethics and the dignity of Moroccan society," she was quoted as saying by Al-Tajdid.

- SAPA
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Stand up paddler rides over shark!

This stand up paddler had no idea that a great white shark was directly beneath him when he went gliding out to shore.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Bear Grylls’ top 10 things kids should do outdoors
You HAVE to see this MTB Tsunami Fip!
Mountain unicycling – say WHAT?
Top tips to ensure you’re running right

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Deal of the week!

20% off Afrikaans books, music and DVDs. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Hot gaming titles – available for pre-order!

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Day Zero Edition, Far Cry 4, Grand Theft Auto 5 and more. Pre-order now!

Get a free eBook

Buy 3 eBooks and get the cheapest FREE. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Pushing too hard and doing too much may have left you feeling drained and overwhelmed. You may need time out to recharge and reset...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.