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Mass held in Spain backs new abortion law

Monday - 12/30/2013, 5:38am  ET

Archbishop Antonio Rouco Varela delivers a speech, during a mass, in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013. Thousands of people have attended a mass in Madrid honoring the family as the building block of Christianity where church leaders gave their backing to government moves aimed at tightening restrictions on abortions. The outdoor service in Colon square was conducted Sunday by Archbishop Antonio Rouco Varela, who said “the gift of life” was sacred and not to be tampered with. The conservative government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Dec. 20 gave its cabinet approval for a new abortion law that will allow abortions only in the case of rape or when there is a serious health risk to the mother or fetus. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)

MADRID (AP) -- Thousands of people have attended a Mass in Madrid to honor family values and support government moves aimed at tightening restrictions on abortion in Spain.

Archbishop Antonio Rouco Varela led Sunday's outdoor service in Colon square and said "the gift of life" should be considered sacred and not tampered with.

The conservative government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Dec. 20 gave his Cabinet approval for a new abortion law that would allow terminations only in the case of rape or when there is a serious health risk to the mother or fetus. Such a law would need to be approved by Parliament, where the government has a large majority.

Pope Francis gave his blessing for Sunday's Mass via a video link from the Vatican.


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