Nationwide protests: Black Monday in Poland

19:19 Oct. 3, 2016

Black Monday in Poland

Polish women strike to signify grief in terms of the abortion ban in Poland, 03 October, 2016, Warsaw. (GettyImages Photo)

Thousands of women took to streets in protest against proposed near-complete abortion prohibition

Thousands of women gathered on the streets of Warsaw on Monday in a protest against a proposed abortion ban. In a demonstration called ‘the Black Monday', they marched through the capital, dressed in black. This is reported by Deutsche Welle. 

Companies and institutions in the city were closed, because the women went on strike, refusing to do domestic chores as well, in a protest inspired by a women's strike in Iceland in 1975.

Read also: Battle over abortion law continues in Poland

The current regulations in Poland dictate that abortions are only permitted if the fetus threatens the mother's life, is badly damaged, or the pregnancy is caused by rape or incest.

The latest bill, however, proposed by the country's ruling party Law and Justice and backed by the Catholic Church, terminates these exceptions, and only leaves possibility for the abortion when the fetus dies as a result of medical care, necessary to prevent an immediate threat to the mother's life.  

The bill, which hasn't been approved by the Parliament yet, also increases the maximum jail sentence for carrying out pregnancy termination from two to five years. Doctors, involved in the procedure, could also face charges and imprisonment.

Read also: Proposed abortion ban splits opinion in Poland

The protests also took place in other cities of Poland. Over a thousand Krakow residents arrived at the main square, also dressed in black.

The color is a sign of mourning for the possible loss of their reproductive rights. The women were joined by men in a nationwide demonstration. People in other countries took to the streets to show solidarity with the Poles. 

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