Chapter XXIX of the Penal Code of Japan makes abortion illegal in Japan. However, the Maternal Health Protection Law allows approved doctors to practice abortion with the consent of the mother and her spouse, if the pregnancy has resulted from rape , or if the continuation of the pregnancy may severely endanger the maternal health because of physical reasons or economic reasons. Other people, including the mother herself, trying to abort the fetus can be punished by the law. People trying to practice abortion without the consent of the woman can also be punished, including the doctors.
Currently, approximately 25% of the world population lives in many countries (mainly in Africa, Latin America and Asia) with highly restrictive laws that either ban abortion entirely or permit it only to save the life of the pregnant women. These restrictive abortion laws violate women's human rights based on agreements made at the UN International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo, the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.