The right-wing conservative Croatian Sovereignists' party started gathering signatures on Monday in order for parliament to discuss their proposal for an anti-abortion law, which says that human life starts at the moment of conception.
Under the proposal, abortion would be legal only if pregnancy poses a threat to the pregnant woman’s life. The focus would be on education, counselling and prevention.
“This is a chance for all those who call themselves Christian Democrats to prove that they are indeed prepared to protect human life from its conception,” the party’s leader Hrvoje Zekanovic said in a statement.
“Now we will see whether they care more about values or party discipline, especially members of the (ruling) HDZ (Croatian Democratic Union) whose leader is so afraid of raising this issue that he did not even honour the deadline which the Constitutional Court gave him a long time ago to change the law,” Zekanovic added.
The Sovereignists need at least 30 signatures for the matter to be included on parliament’s agenda. They appealed to all the lawmakers who ever claimed they were pro-life to sign the petition, stressing that their proposal was based on “scientific facts and Christian teaching and that it fully protected life.”
The present law was adopted in 1978. The Constitutional Court ordered parliament in 2017 to pass a new law within two years, and the Sovereignists said that they had been waiting since March 2019 for their proposal to be put up for discussion.