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Hungary’s new constitution appears to ban abortion

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Summary of story from Pink News, January 3, 2012

Hungary’s new constitution appears to ban abortion by saying that foetuses will be protected ‘from conception onwards’.

The constitution, which came into effect on January 1, also bans gay marriage and does not explicitly protect gay people from discrimination.

The constitution was enacted by 262-44 votes in April 2011.

The document does not protect citizens from discrimination on the grounds of age or sexual orientation, prompting rights group Amnesty International to warn last year that it would not satisfy international human rights laws.

Many have now taken to the streets of the capital, Budapest, to voice their opposition to the new autocratic framework.

Viktor Orban, leader of the ruling Fidesz party, which came to power last year, has been dubbed “Viktator” for his leadership style.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last year urged Orban to enshrine “the independence of the judiciary, a free press, and governmental transparency” in the new text.

But lawmakers said the constitution was based on the European Union’s Charter of Fundamental Rights.

And the Hungarian organisation of the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights said last year that the constitution ‘expresses a preference for an explicitly defined family model, a certain way of life and conveys the message that it does not wish to become the constitution of those who wish to pursue a different way of life’.

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