Istanbul (Agenzia Fides) - "Abortion is murder": is what the Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan said during a meeting with groups and women's associations in Turkey. "What is the difference between killing a baby in the womb of a mother and killing a child after birth?" He asked with a rhetorical question. The support for abortion should be seen as "a devious plan to weaken the country." This is why Erdogan announced that his government intends to prepare a law to abolish abortion.
Erdogan also encouraged the people in Turkey to maintain a high birth rate, arguing that population growth helps to strengthen the country economically and socially. The Premier said he was also in favor of a "policy of the three children," urging families to have at least 3 children.
Abortion has been legal in Turkey since 1983, in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. Currently the issue of abortion is not a central factor in the political debate: this is why Erdogan's statements were a surprise, and have attracted strong criticism from women and opposition groups. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 30/5/2012)