Revisiting international law's discussion on the moral status of the fetus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review


This study examines what hinders international law in establishing a binding guideline for abortion. This work seeks to discuss how debates in international affairs take the subject of the moral status of fetuses. As such, international organizations use the argument of “differences” in ethical standards among countries and world regions as a reason not to have binding abortion rights. This work argues, however, that this reason has invalid premises and is not sufficient to dismiss a binding international abortion law. While the moral status of the fetus is a matter to be further contested, this work argues that a provisional conclusion in the international law is urgent in situations where the unresolved abortion issues render women (pregnant or not) vulnerability, depriving them of a policy protection. Finally, this work concludes that establishing an international abortion law does not necessarily preclude political agents from keeping it under discussion, which keeps law accountable to ethics.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of topical issues in international political geography
EditorsRadomir Bolgov, Vadim Atnashev, Yury Gladkiy, Art Leete, Alexey Tsyb, Sergey Pogodin
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9783030582630
ISBN (Print)9783030582623, 9783030582654
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes
EventTopical Issues of International Political Geography (2021) - St Petersburg, Russian Federation
Duration: 15 Oct 202116 Oct 2021

Publication series

NameSpringer Geography
ISSN (Print)2194-315X
ISSN (Electronic)2194-3168


ConferenceTopical Issues of International Political Geography (2021)
Abbreviated titleTIPG 2021
Country/TerritoryRussian Federation
CitySt Petersburg


  • Consequentialism
  • Deontology
  • International law
  • Moral status
  • Political philosophy
  • Unborn


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