Portugal May OK Choice; Health Funding Diverted

(WOMENSENEWS)–CheersShortly after he was disappointed by election results in a Feb. 11 referendum to liberalize Portugal’s strict abortion law, Prime Minister Jose Socrates vowed to secure legal abortion rights for women.Fifty-nine percent of Portugal’s voters said yes in the referendum, which authorized abortions up to the 10th week of pregnancy. But, because fewer than half of eligible voters turned out, the results were dismissed as nonbinding, the BBC reported Feb. 12. Currently, abortions in Portugal are permitted only in cases that threaten life, involve rape, or if a serious fetal anomaly can be proven.In a speech after the results were made public, Socrates said that he and his left-center Socialist government would work “immediately to pass the law in parliament,” Portugal News reported Feb.