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Turkey to toughen laws on surrogacy

Turkey’s Ministry of Health prepares a new draft law that would prevent Turks from having children through surrogate mothers, even if abroad.
SYDNEY, NSW - JUNE 07:  A pregnant woman holds her stomach June 7, 2006 in Sydney, Australia. Australia is currently enjoying a baby boom, with the Australian Bureau of Statistics registering a 2.4% increase in births from 2004 to 2005, which represents the highest number of births since 1992. The Australian Federal Government has been encouraging people to have more babies, with financial incentives and the slogan by treasurer Peter Costello to "have one for mum, one for dad, and one for the country". The

News about surrogate motherhood has always been a hot topic in the Turkish media, whether it’s about Turkey’s celebrities who express a desire to have a child through a surrogate mother or unconfirmed reports that Kim Kardashian hired a surrogate mother to give birth to her third child. But the recent wave of news in the media regarding surrogacy is about the introduction of a draft law that would punish surrogate mothers with two to five years of imprisonment.

Under the present law, surrogate motherhood is in a gray area. The 282/1 article of the Turkish Civil Code says that the relationship between mother and child is established through birth. This means that surrogate motherhood “has no basis in Turkish law” and that the surrogate mother is the mother. Should a couple try to have a child by a surrogate mother, establishing parenthood becomes a legal muddle. In vitro fertilization, on the other hand, is possible, and there are regulations in the Turkish bylaws about Assisted Reproduction and Infertility Centers, which can be used by married couples only.

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