Israeli Government May Soon Fund All Abortions

Even though it's technically kind of illegal in the country
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 30, 2013 2:40 PM CST
Israeli Government May Soon Fund All Abortions
Hospital beds are seen in Tel Aviv, Israel, in this file photo.   (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

An Israeli Health Ministry commission is proposing that the government fund all abortions for women aged 20-33, with the intention of eventually extending that to all women, period, Haaretz reports. Currently, the government only subsidizes abortions when it's medically necessary, or in women who are under 20 or over 40. But the commission observed that this has left "a large group of women" who keep unwanted pregnancies for financial or secrecy reasons. It estimates that the program will cost about $4.6 million.

Women will however still have to appear before a state committee before ending the pregnancy. Abortion is technically illegal in Israel, but there are numerous exceptions—including benefit to the mother's emotional or financial well-being, the Times of Israel explains. There is, however, basically no anti-abortion movement in Israel, and abortion has never been a major political issue there. (More Israel stories.)

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