Poland’s parliament on Thursday debated liberalising abortion laws in the majority Catholic country, with splits in the ruling coalition suggesting an uncertain outcome.

Women’s rights were rolled back during the eight-year rule of the previous right-wing government, with the tightening of already strict abortion laws sparking mass rallies.

The country of 38 million people has some of Europe’s strictest abortion laws, allowing the procedure only if pregnancy results from sexual assault or incest, or if it threatens the life or health of the mother.

But a moderate coalition came to power in October on a pledge to legalise abortion, with all three groups in the alliance submitting bills to grant more reproductive rights.

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