Thailand moves to ban commercial surrogacy

Comment on this story
IOL pic aug6 EPA gammy surrogate case EPA Thai surrogate Pattaramon Janbua holds baby Gammy's hand at a hospital in Chonburi province in Thailand on August 4, 2014. Picture: Rungroj Yongrit

Bangkok - Thailand's military government gave preliminary approval on Wednesday for a draft law to make commercial surrogacy a criminal offence, following a spate of dramatic surrogacy scandals in the past two weeks.

The case of an Australian couple accused of abandoning their Down syndrome son with his Thai surrogate mother unleashed an international outcry over the “wombs for hire” business that rights groups say preys on poor and vulnerable women in countries such as India and Thailand.

“The NCPO has approved a surrogacy draft law,” Pattamaporn Rattanadilok na Phuket, a spokeswoman for the military government, officially known as the National Council for Peace and Order, told reporters on Wednesday.

“We will punish through criminal law those who practice and are involved in commercial surrogacy,” the spokeswoman added. “Those who hire surrogate mothers or make this a commercial business will be violating criminal law.”

The law is awaiting final approval from the National Legislative Assembly and would then have to be formally endorsed by Thailand's King Bhumibol Adulyadej. It is unclear how long final approval will take.

Thailand's army seized power in May after months of street protests. The junta has ordered a nationwide probe into the country's shadowy surrogacy industry. - Reuters

sign up

Comment Guidelines

  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

  5. Verified email addresses: All users on Independent Media news sites are now required to have a verified email address before being allowed to comment on articles. You are only required to verify your email address once to have full access to commenting on articles. For more information please read our comment guidelines