In a major abortion rights case in the US state of Texas, a court has allowed a woman to have an abortion. The pregnant woman had sued against the restrictive abortion ban in Texas and was proven right in an Austin court on Thursday.
According to doctors, the 31-year-old’s child will not survive until birth or will die shortly afterwards, as US media reported. Without an abortion, there is also a risk of complications in a future pregnancy and a general health risk for the woman. However, she was denied an abortion due to the extensive abortion ban in Texas. The court now issued an injunction and allowed the abortion.
The verdict in Texas is significant because, according to US media, it is the first highly publicized case of a woman successfully suing for an emergency abortion since the end of the country’s right to abortion. A year and a half ago, the US Supreme Court overturned the right to abortion in the country, which had been in force since 1973. The states now have sovereignty over legislation – a legal patchwork has emerged.
Attorney General threatens doctors
In the Republican-governed state of Texas, the regulations are particularly strict. Abortion is prohibited in almost all cases – except when the mother’s life is in danger. However, critics argue that the exceptions are formulated so vaguely that doctors often do not carry out abortions for fear of lawsuits. It is expected that Texas will appeal the decision. The state’s attorney general, Ken Paxton, has already threatened doctors who may perform an abortion. “The injunction does not protect you or anyone else from civil and criminal liability,” he wrote.
The judge, however, expressed herself clearly when she announced her decision on Thursday. “Now a patient has to be close to death before a doctor can invoke the exception. “This attitude is not only cruel and dangerous, but also violates the Texas Constitution, medical ethics and the laws themselves,” US media quoted Judge Maya Guerra Gamble, a Democrat, as saying. The idea that the plaintiff wanted to be a mother again, but that Texas law could mean she could lose that ability, was “shocking and would be a real miscarriage of justice.”
© dpa-infocom, dpa:231207-99-220164/2