The Spanish embassy in Ukraine announced the other day that the country government had decided to begin rejecting registrations for babies born to surrogates in Ukraine.
In the official statement posted on Facebook, the embassy said that while a number of existing cases would be individually considered, "no new registration records of children born through the surrogacy can be authorized."
This is not the first instance of Spanish authorities cracking down on international surrogacy. Back in August of last year, dozens of Spanish families who had children via surrogates in Ukraine were blocked from returning home for up to 10 weeks, with the Spanish government citing concerns of medical malpractice and human trafficking.
One Spanish woman, Cristina Álvarez, who had a baby girl via surrogacy in Ukraine last year and was among those affected by the block, said circumstances had since grown worse, "The situation is now much worse because when we arrived we all knew there were registration problems. Before, people were going to register, but wouldn't receive a refusal. We already knew what we were playing with, but now they are being much more unfair. They are going to register the children who are here now, but not the ones born tomorrow."
She went on to explain the further issue of Spain's refusal to register the children as the parents were not Ukrainian, and, therefore not citizens, which could potentially lead to a child being stateless.
To get a clearer idea of why Ukraine is becoming an increasingly popular hotspot for people seeking surrogates, it is important to look at other laws across Europe. Much of Europe has outright banned surrogacy, including Spain, while other countries such as the UK and Portugal outline tough restrictions.
Ukraine, however, is quite relaxed on its laws, allowing surrogacy for heterosexual couples that are either native citizens or foreigners. Significantly, the law in Ukraine states that the baby belongs to the “intended parents” and the surrogate has no parental rights from the moment of conception. It also does not place any limit on how much a surrogate can be paid.
From the Editor: In any publication, the most interested are those for whom this publication is placed in the media. In our opinion, the highest indicator of the relevance of the topic covered is the reaction of the users themselves to the proposed events or circumstances. Therefore, below we allow ourselves to cite a few comments from European Internet users and try our readers to form an opinion about the event, which directly concerns ordinary citizens of European countries, be it Spain, Ukraine, or Russia ... who are denied respect for the elementary rights they are entitled to by birth, for the sake of compliance with the laws invented, sorry for the tautology, outraged officials:
I can’t understand what the problem is. Why the Spanish government is doing this? I know from the firsthand and from own experience that Ukraine is one of the few countries where you can legally obtain a full range of ART services. This fact makes local medicine one of the fastest growing one. It is mainly thanks to the interest of foreign patients. I read some article on the internet and their statistics show that in 2015 more than 17 thousand ART cycles were initiated in Ukraine. It seems that this number is going to increase. I think that it is because this country has many advantages in the fertility field. First of all, ART is legal there. Secondly, there is good service and the success rate of medical programs. The price is also very affordable. You will not be able to find such a price anywhere in Europe or America. I think that it is an impressive service.
Shame on all the countries banning surrogacy! My wife cannot carry out a pregnancy, surrogacy would be the only possible solution to have our own baby. But it's banned everywhere! Shame on all of you! You are denying us having a baby of our own flesh and blood!
Don't understand why not? Spain has a below replacement birthrate using surrogate mothers is a gteat way for otherwise infertile couples to still have children.
You are talking about a Catholic Country. Where having children is the norm. And where the youth is unemployed cause of stupid money invested into building Airports that are of no use. FACTS sure differ from the so called numbers.
It is a good business. It helps infertile parents have children and doesn't have any negative externalities. Net export for Ukraine and great income for healthy women. What's wrong with that? The government probably couldn't find a way to tax it so they just banned it.
Photo: Santi Palacios
Based on Euronews