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Abortion Debate Begins in Cambodia

The Cambodian National Assembly proposed banning midwives and lay healers from performing abortions on Monday. The new law would legalize first-trimester abortions performed by licensed practitioners only.

Because Cambodia currently has no abortion laws, untrained health workers often perform abortions for extra money and because women have nowhere else to go. The government wants to make abortions safer because complications from back-alley clinics are a big contributor to the high maternal death rate. There is no serious opposition to the bill, which would imprison unlicensed abortionists.

Sources:

AP - September 22, 1997