Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Russian Church calls for tougher abortion laws

(Reuters) - The Russian Orthodox Church on Tuesday called for tougher rules to reduce the number of abortions carried out in a country struggling to combat its fast-dwindling population, media reported.

Analysts say reducing Russia's high abortion rate -- one of the world's highest -- could be one of the keys to saving the country from a demographic disaster.

Russia registered 1.2 million abortions and 1.7 million births last year, according to the Health Ministry.

Since the fall almost 20 years ago of the Soviet Union, which encouraged new births with prizes and money, Russia's population has steadily dropped. It shrunk by more than 12 million between 1992 and 2008.
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