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Court allows Arkansas ban on surgical abortions due to virus

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A federal appeals court is allowing Arkansas to ban most surgical abortions during the coronavirus pandemic.

A three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday dissolved a judge’s temporary restraining order against the abortion ban.

The Arkansas Department of Health had told the state’s only surgical abortion clinic to stop performing the procedure unless it was needed to protect the life or health of the mother.

The state had argued Little Rock Family Planning Services violated a ban on elective surgeries during the pandemic.

The appeals court’s ruling says the Health Department’s “directive is a legally valid response to the circumstances.” 

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