Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Senator Blames Abortion for Society's 'Rising Level of Aggression’

Yelena Mizulina Anna Isakova / TASS

The abortion debate has heated up again in Russia this week, following a decision by the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, to sign a petition supporting a complete ban on the procedure. While the Russian Orthodox Church later explained that the endorsement was meant only to bring public attention to the issue, the nation’s conservative politicians are already weighing in on the subject.

Senator Yelena Mizulina, perhaps Russia’s most vocal “moral legislator,” told journalists Wednesday that abortions were responsible for “raising the level of aggression in society.”

“Just according to official statistics,” Mizulina said, “there are up to 1 million abortions performed in Russia [annually], and experts say it’s actually far more. But this can’t be solved simply by going and prohibiting [the procedure].”

While she opposes a ban on abortion, Mizulina says Russian society has an unhealthy understanding of the procedure. She accuses the country of seeing abortion as a “normal, ordinary medical operation — but it isn’t.”

“In fact, both the woman who decides to have an abortion and the loved ones who support her then experience a lifelong sense of guilt, and it’s precisely this feeling that leads to the growth of aggression in society,” Mizulina explained, adding that she believes abortion should not be covered by compulsory health insurance programs.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

As the only remaining independent, English-language news source reporting from Russia, The Moscow Times plays a critical role in connecting Russia to the world.

Editorial decisions are made entirely by journalists in our newsroom, who adhere to the highest ethical standards. We fearlessly cover issues that are often considered off-limits or taboo in Russia, from domestic violence and LGBT issues to the climate crisis and a secretive nuclear blast that exposed unknowing doctors to radiation.

Please consider making a one-time donation — or better still a recurring donation — to The Moscow Times to help us continue producing vital, high-quality journalism about the world's largest country.