Iran May Outlaw ... Vasectomies
Ayatollah is looking to boost national birthrate
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Apr 16, 2014 9:35 AM CDT
Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei gives a speech at a public gathering in the city of Mashhad, Iran, Friday, March 21, 2014.   (AP Photo/Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader)

(Newser) – Two decades ago, Iran started distributing free condoms and subsidizing men's sterilization. Now, it's looking to do quite the opposite: The country's parliament is considering a ban on vasectomies, along with a crackdown on contraception and abortion services. The goal: increasing the country's population, the Guardian reports. Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who wants to see the population double to 150 million, has said his nation's current contraception policy mimics the West.

"If we move forward like this, we will be a country of elderly people in a not too distant future," he said last year. His support means the measures, which parliament this week voted to consider, are likely to become law, the Guardian notes. But some 70% of Iranians are younger than 35, and an AIDS activist says contraception doesn't explain the current slow birthrate. "They are not able to procreate because social, economic problems are stopping them from marriage," Kamiar Alaei says. "The blame should be on those problems, not a policy that has worked quite well." Changing the rules could lead to increased deaths in childbirth, he says. The birthrate in 2011 was 1.3%, among the region's lowest, the Daily Mail adds.

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Iran May Outlaw ... Vasectomies is...
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Showing 3 of 37 comments
Apr 21, 2014 11:11 AM CDT
So, America's strategy should be to skyrocket our birthrate so the Ayatollah will do the opposite of America and mandate birth control, condoms and vasectomies for Iranian men. Then in a generation or two, the fanatical, radicals will be... gone! Problem solved!
Arthur Vandelay
Apr 17, 2014 10:24 AM CDT
That ayatollah is one creepy looking guy. and people listen to this@###@@ ????
Apr 17, 2014 2:15 AM CDT
I like his honesty. unlike the repuglicans and their run around a woman's constitutional rights. The Secret Anti-Abortion Law That's Sweeping America "...consider the fact that it caused one-third of health centers to stop providing abortions. Women in the Rio Grande Valley now have to travel hundreds of miles (if they're lucky enough to have the transportation and resources) to get access to a safe, legal abortion."