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Court of Appeals rules doctors must not abort mentally-ill woman’s baby

by | Jun 24, 2019

By SPUC—the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children

Editor’s note. As we were about to post the story from SPUC that Mrs. Justice Lieven had ruled it was in the “best interest” of a pregnant mentally ill woman to have an abortion over her family’s objection when we learned that a three-judge Court of Appeals had ruled today that doctors could not abort the unnamed woman.

“Lord Justice McCombe, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Peter Jackson had considered the challenge at a Court of Appeal hearing in London,” the Press Association reported. “They said they would give reasons for their decision at a later date. Lawyers said they thought the circumstances of the case were unique.”

We are posting the original SPUC story for background and because this case is not firmly settled as yet.

By SPUC—the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children

This shocking case came to light on Friday, when doctors caring for the unnamed woman petitioned the Court of Protection to allow them to perform an abortion in her “best interests.” Mrs. Justice Lieven agreed with the doctors and ordered that the abortion take place, despite admitting it is against the woman’s will.

“Immense Intrusion”

“I am acutely conscious of the fact that for the State to order a woman to have a termination where it appears that she doesn’t want it is an immense intrusion,” said the judge in a ruling on Friday.

“I have to operate in (her) best interests not on society’s views of termination.”

Judge Lievan said the woman had no sense of what having a baby “meant” and added: “I think she would like to have a baby in the same way she would like to have a nice doll.”

“Not A Real Baby”

The woman’s mother, a Nigerian Catholic midwife, said that she would care for the baby, and is appealing the decision. However, Justice Lieven dismissed the possibility, and said she thought the woman would suffer more distress if the baby was taken away than if pregnancy was terminated.

“I think (she) would suffer greater trauma from having a baby removed,” said the judge.”It would at that stage be a real baby.”

The judge added: “Pregnancy, although real to her, doesn’t have a baby outside her body she can touch.”

The woman’s social worker disagreed that an abortion was in her best interests, and her legal team said there was “no proper evidence” to show this.

The judge involved, Nathalie Lieven, has a long history of abortion advocacy. As a lawyer, she represented the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) in 2011 in their crusade to allow home abortions. From 2015 to 2018, Judge Lieven represented the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission as it launched legal action against Northern Ireland’s government, arguing that their pro-life law violated the human rights of women and girls.

What Can Be Done?

The ruling has sparked outrage, with thousands of people signing petitions and contacting the Secretary of State for Health. A demonstration is planned outside Parliament tomorrow. SPUC is asking supporters to contact their MP and local press.

“This is an outrage which should shock every right-thinking person,” SPUC’s deputy chief executive John Deighan said.

“It is a level of cruelty and barbarity reminiscent of how people with mental health issues were treated in the 1930s of Nazi Germany. To force abortion on any person is abhorrent and to do so in the name of medicine and in the complete defiance of the religious and cultural values of the mother concerned calls into question the structures of law and justice in our society.”

Categories: Abortion
Tags: abortion