Abortion in Moldova

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Abortion in Moldova is legal on request within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, and generally permitted until 28 weeks for a broad variety of reasons determined by the Ministry of Health. The Ministry of Health orders permit abortions until 22 weeks in the event of a threat to health, a pregnancy that results from a crime, a fetus with genetic defects or for social reasons, and abortions are permitted until 28 weeks if the fetus has severe malformations or congenital syphilis. Abortions must be carried out in authorized medical facilities by obstetricians and gynecologists. [1]

Prior to independence, abortion in Moldova was governed by the abortion laws of the Soviet Union. Abortion laws have not changed significantly since then.[2]

The abortion rate in Moldova has declined sharply since independence. In 1989, the Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic reported a rate of 93.0 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 years, which was among the highest reported rates in the Soviet Union; the actual rate was much higher. The abortion rate fell to 50 in 1994, 38.8 in 1996, 30.8 in 1998[2] and 17.6 in 2004.[3] As of 2010, the abortion rate was 18.0 abortions per 1000 women aged 15-44 years. [4]

Maternal mortality due to unsafe abortions remains a problem in Moldova.[5]

In 2006, a young woman was arrested for an illegal abortion, convicted of intentional murder and sentenced to 20 years imprisonment. She was freed in 2012 after international pressure.[6]


  1. ^ "Law No. 411 of 28 March 1995 on health; Criminal Code, 18 April 2002, as amended through 2008". 2008. Retrieved 2 March 2014.
  2. ^ a b Abortion Policies: A Global Review (DOC). 2. United Nations Population Division. 2002. Retrieved 2 March 2014.
  3. ^ "World Abortion Policies 2007". United Nations. 2007. Retrieved 2 March 2014.
  4. ^ "World Abortion Policies 2013". United Nations. 2013. Retrieved 3 March 2014.
  5. ^ Comendant, R (2005). "A project to improve the quality of abortion services in Moldova". Reproductive Health Matters. 13 (26): 93–100. doi:10.1016/S0968-8080(05)26206-7. PMID 16291490.
  6. ^ "Moldovan Woman Imprisoned for Abortion Pardoned and Freed" (Press release). Center for Reproductive Rights. 17 February 2012. Retrieved 2 March 2014.