WARSAW (ChurchMilitant.com) - Poland's leading officials are supporting a citizen-lead initiative seeking to ban all abortions in the country.
On the steps outside of all Poland's Catholic churches after Mass Sunday, Poland's pro-life group, Fundacja Pro (Pro Foundation), gathered signatures for a citizen's parliamentary bill calling for a total ban on abortion.
The recent legislation was ignited by the highly publicized incident two weeks ago whereby a baby was born alive after two botched abortion attempts and then left to die screaming unattended in the hospital.
Poland's Prime Minister, Beata Szydlo, told Radio Poland on Thursday that she supports the citizen's bill, which needs 100,000 signatures before it can be considered by the legislature.
Szydlo told Polish Radio that the citizen's bill "has clearly pointed us in the right direction."
Jaroslaw Kaczynski, leader of the ruling Law and Justice Party (PiS), spoke to reporters last week saying that he is "convinced that a vast majority of the caucus, or perhaps all of it, will back the proposal."
The Law and Justice party also intends to stop state funding for in-vitro fertilization and restrict access to the "morning after pill."
Poland's bishops had a letter read in all churches Sunday which backed the citizen's measure to end abortion. The letter, signed last Wednesday, states: "The life of every person is protected by the fifth of the Ten Commandments: thou shalt not kill. Therefore the position of Catholics in this regard is clear and unchangeable."
Poland's current abortion law, adopted in 1993, allows abortions up to the 25th week from conception for a seriously malformed fetus or in case of criminally proven rape or incest. About 200 abortions are performed each year under these exceptions.
The bishops' letter called the present abortion law a "compromise," adding, "One needs to protect every person's life from conception to natural death. We ask the lawmakers and the government to initiate the legislation."
Abortion activists responded Sunday by organizing protests outside of the Polish parliament in Warsaw.
To learn about Poland's history of abortion watch "The Download—Left to Die."