Laws on gender-based abortion, a common practice due to China's one-child policy, are under review. The National People's Congress had been considering punishments for selective abortions of up to three years in jail, but a new draft amendment of China's criminal law does not include the measure, state media reported. Officials fear harsh measures could simply drive the practice underground while problems could also arise during prosecution, as couples can use valid reasons to justify abortions. China's gender ratio is skewed with 119 boys for every 100 girls, compared to a worldwide average of 105 to 100.
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