January 15, 2010

Today, members of the State Duma (Parliament) passed a law restricting pro-abortion advertisements in Russia. The law stipulates that advertising on this topic cannot be directed at minors, shall not be broadcasted on television or radio nor featured on the front or last page of newspapers and magazines, and should not appear on public transportation, billboards, or in cultural or sport facilities. From now on, pro-abortion advertisements must also contain information on the associated health risks for women. The law does not provide any restrictions on the abortion practice itself.

Recently, the Moscow Patriarchate agreed with the ruling of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation, dated November 19, 2009, regarding the permanent moratorium on the death penalty in Russia. According to Russian Orthodox Archpriest Dmitriy Smirnov, the prohibition of abortion in Russia should be the next step. He stated, "It is the very same problem with just one key difference. The death penalty allows for killing of those who are guilty or is due to a judicial error, while abortion permits the killing of the innocent."

According to the World Health Organization, Russia ranks the highest among western countries in terms of abortions per capita, with an average that is 8 times higher than in the USA, 10 times higher than in England and France, and 20 times higher than in the Netherlands. In the Russian Federation, the average woman undergoes two abortions in her lifetime.