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[Newsmaker] Obstetrician accused of performing abortion at 34 weeks

An obstetrician was detained on allegations of performing an abortion on a woman who was 34 weeks pregnant and killing the fetus after it survived the procedure.

The Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said Tuesday that the 60-something obstetrician faces charges of murder and performing an abortion.


According to police, the fetus allegedly survived the hysterotomy abortion, which involves opening the uterus through an abdominal incision, at a hospital in Seoul in March.

Police suspect the obstetrician intentionally caused the fetus’ death, an allegation he denies.

The woman who had undergone the operation was also booked on abortion charges.

In April, the Constitutional Court ruled that the abortion law prohibiting abortion at all stages of pregnancy was unconstitutional. The court said that abortion should be allowed during the first 22 weeks of pregnancy.

Police said the case will be referred to prosecutors.