Although Israel is often seen as relatively progressive on abortion because a vast majority of women are able to terminate their pregnancies, the situation here is actually the inverse of most Western countries, where abortion is lawful and largely free of restrictions. Israel’s policy may be better than countries where abortions are strictly prohibited (like Brazil and Egypt), or where exceptions are made only to save a woman’s life (like Ireland), but it is far from being liberal.
Israel’s policy sends a message to women that while the state will facilitate our abortions in practice, it refuses – in principle — to grant us the freedom to make that decision ourselves. And that is an infringement of our basic rights to bodily integrity and privacy.
Mairav Zonszein, “Israel’s Abortion Committees”, The New York Times (14 June 2015), SR4.