Ukraine proposes bill to lift ban on using deceased soldiers’ sperm

Ukrainian lawmakers have proposed a new bill aimed at reversing a ban on the use of deceased soldiers’ sperm and eggs. The controversial law, set to take effect in March, mandates the destruction of stored reproductive material belonging to soldiers who have passed away. The legislation has sparked a heated debate in Ukraine, a country still grappling with heavy losses from the Russian invasion. Olena Kondratyuk, Deputy Parliamentary Speaker and member of the Fatherland party, expressed hope that public outrage would sway lawmakers to support an amendment overturning the postmortem disposal of biomaterial. The issue gained widespread attention after lawyer Olena Babych shared the story of a grieving widow whose husband had frozen his sperm before his death, only to discover she would not be allowed to use it. The legislation passed last year permitted Ukrainian soldiers to freeze their reproductive material at no cost in case of battle injuries, but also stated that it would be destroyed in the event of the fighter’s death. The health ministry has assured that reproductive clinics will not dispose of fallen soldiers’ frozen biomaterial. Kondratyuk proposed expanding the revised law to allow widows, widowers, unmarried partners, and even parents of deceased soldiers to utilize the stored sperm and eggs. Unlike many other European countries, Ukraine permits surrogate motherhood, making it a popular choice for international couples prior to the war. The conflict and subsequent emigration have led to a decline in the country’s population, with an estimated 6.5 to 7.5 million people leaving Ukraine. The health ministry, in collaboration with MPs, is actively working to resolve the legislative conflict surrounding this issue.

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