Rights of the Unborn in the UK and EU

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The right to life of the unborn was historically protected by British laws on abortion. The English common law did not prosecute for abortions performed before quickening. In 1803, with Lord Ellenborough's Act, Parliament enacted statutes overriding this relatively lenient stance …


There are multiple arguments for and against abortion in the UK. However, the right to life has been historically protected by state parties with appropriate legislation. The rights of the unborn are protected by the states. Historically, laws were promulgated to promote the rights of the unborn. For example, Article 6 of the Convention of the Rights of the Child states: a.) States Parties recognize that every child has the inherent right to life; and, b.) States Parties shall ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child. The Offences against the Person Act Section 58 of the Act made abortion a criminal offence, punishable by imprisonment from three years to life even when performed for medical reasons. The legalization of abortion in recent times has effectively removed that protection. Infant Life Preservation Act 1929 and Abortion Act of 1967 provided the exceptions to this 1861 Act. The arguments for abortion insist on the welfare of the mother, the rights of the unborn child born without disability and the concept that an unborn child is not a person. Several international laws govern the protection of the rights of the unborn child: the UN Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the American Convention on Human Rights, the European Convention of Human Rights and the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). ...
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