Fears that clinics terminate girls because parents don't want them
INVESTIGATIONS are to be carried out following a report that some clinics in Britain are carrying out abortions on the basis of parents wanting them because the child is the “wrong sex”.
Choosing to terminate a foetus on the basis of its sex is illegal in Britain but there have been claims that a small minority of Asian parents and others have sought terminations on these grounds.
A report in today's (23) Daily Telegraph claimed that it had hidden camera footage which showed doctors, at British clinics offering to falsify paperwork in order to allow women to have terminations based on gender.
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said he was "extremely concerned" by the allegations.
"Sex selection is illegal and is morally wrong," he said. "I've asked my officials to investigate this as a matter of urgency."
According to the Telegraph, undercover reporters accompanied pregnant woman to nine different clinics across the country.
Doctors at three out of the nine clinics agreed to arrange terminations even though the woman claimed she did not want the baby due to its sex, the paper claimed.
Abortions in Britain are allowed in limited circumstances, including when the pregnancy presents a serious mental or physical health risk to the mother and if there is a high chance the child would have severe disabilities.
The clinic at the centre of one of the newspaper's investigation has this morning denied any wrongdoing.
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