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Home birth and human rights: Lithuania's turn

02 September 2019
Volume 27 · Issue 9


After prominent cases concerning home birth in Hungary and Croatia, another case has been brought to the European Court of Human Rights, this time concerning home birth in Lithuania

In this column I have discussed legal cases presented to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) that are concerned with whether having a home birth can be considered a human right (Symon, 2018). The case of Pojatina v Croatia [2018] relied on a finding from a Hungarian case, Ternovsky v Hungary [2010]. The same reasoning has now been heard in a similar case involving four women from Lithuania whose judgement has just been handed down (Kosaitè-Cypienè and Others v Lithuania [2019]).

These cases all assert that a woman has a legal right to have a home birth if she chooses. They rely on an interpretation of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights which states that

‘1. Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence.

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