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Oppose attempts to ban abortion in Lithuanian Republic

An appeal for solidarity

Monday 28 January 2008

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PARLIAMENTARY GROUP ON POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT, -REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS OF THE LITHUANIAN REPUBLIC
- Kodas 1886 05295
- Gedimino pr. 53, LT-01109 Vilnius
- Tel. (8-5) 239 66 40
- Faksas (8-5) 239 64 59
- Email: marija.pavilioniene lrs.lt

Dear European feminists,

On behalf of the parliamentary group on Population and Development, Reproductive Health and Rights of the Lithuanian Republic and on behalf of all educated and progressively thinking women and men of Lithuania I address you and ask for a moral support and solidarity in stopping the attempt of the conservative parliamentarians and social organizations to ban abortion in our country. The project of the law to safeguard an unborn life, to force women give birth even to an abnormal child, to criminalize abortion is backed up by the Lithuanian Catholic Church, which negates women reproductive rights.

After regaining political independence and becoming a member of the European Union Lithuania ratified all international conventions, passed new laws, which eliminate all forms of discrimination against women. The right to gender equality is a fundamental principle of human rights law and an essential value of the European Reform Treaty. Women reproductive rights are a part of human rights. Therefore each woman and each couple should freely and responsibly decide the number, spacing and timing of their children. No narrow-minded politicians, no Catholic Church authorities have the right to ban family planning, to stop access to modern methods of fertility regulation and sexuality education.

The decision to carry a pregnancy to term or seek an abortion is the right of a woman, guaranteed by the international and national laws of life and health, freedom from discrimination, autonomy in reproductive decision making and protection of the right to woman’s physical integrity. The parliament of the Lithuanian Republic banning or restricting abortion will have to take responsibility for forcing Lithuanian women to undergo life - threatening clandestine abortions or for the early deaths of the fertile Lithuanian women.

The lust for political or church power betraying fundamental human rights and values, subordination of women to men, defence of conservative, traditional social dogms, stereotypical mentality in family annd society throw the new states, members of the EU backward in a cultural and social life. Thus the whole European community is condemned to backwardness. All progressively thinking women and men of Europe should not put up with that.

MEMBER OF THE SEIMAS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
- Marija Au•rine Pavilioniene

- 2008 - 01 - 22
- Vilnius