Proposed changes to the law that will allow legal abortions when a woman's life is in danger will be presented to the Maltese parliament next week. This is a first of its kind for the country, which has the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe.
Abortion is currently illegal in Malta under all circumstances, even in cases of rape, incest and when a woman's life is in danger. Ordering or assisting an abortion can result in a criminal conviction, imprisonment and, in the case of medical professionals, disbarment.
Government data and statistics available to organizations calling for the liberalization of abortion laws show that at least 400 Maltese citizens have abortions each year by purchasing pills from abroad. The figures do not include those who travel outside the country to terminate their pregnancies.