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San Marino, Tiny Nation-State May Be Next To End Abortion Ban

After Ireland, another once Catholic stronghold in Europe is challenging a longstanding law that makes abortion a crime, for both women and doctors.

Some of the last remaining European countries that enforce bans on abortions have sparked massive social movements in recent years: from Poland where 150,000 demonstrated last October in Warsaw after a court ruled in favor of an almost total abortion ban to the outpouring of support in Ireland for a 2018 referendum that repealed an age-old ban —even the miniature-sized British territory of Gibraltar made international headlines after a campaign recently forced a referendum that successfully scrapped the local law that punished abortions with life imprisonment.

But hidden from view, a much quieter battle is unfolding in the sloping, sleepy streets of a medieval city-state tucked inside central Italy. San Marino, population 33,000, is one of the last places in Europe where getting an abortion on request is illegal (The others are: Andorra, Liechtenstein, Malta, Monaco and Poland.)

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Well-Guarded Microstate

I've taken my share of pictures of guards from around the world, but these may be the most original, keeping an eye on the Palazzo Pubblico in the tiny landlocked microstate of San Marino.

Eurovision 2015 Contestants: San Marino


The Most Serene Republic of San Marino, as its official name goes, is not exactly the most serene Eurovision contestant there is. Having failed to qualify in its first four attempts, the landlocked microstate reached the Eurovision final for the first time in 2014, where it finished 24th — out of 26 contestants.

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