The Spanish cabinet has agreed to liberalise the country's strict abortion laws, allowing abortion in most cases up to 14 weeks of pregnancy.
The proposals must go to parliament, where Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero lacks a majority.
His deputy, Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega, said changes were necessary to preserve the "dignity of women".
Anti-abortion groups have condemned the proposals and the Roman Catholic church has started an anti-abortion campaign.
Under current law, introduced in 1985, abortion is allowed in cases of rape up to 12 weeks of pregnancy and up to 22 weeks in the case of foetal malformation.
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