Thailand has confirmed two cases of microcephaly caused by the Zika virus in Bangkok, Thailand, September 13, 2016. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha/File Photo
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Predominantly Buddhist Thailand will relax its strict rules against abortion to cover fetuses with proven birth defects linked to the Zika virus, health officials said Thursday, doubling to 24 weeks a deadline for the procedure.Health experts who met this week to draft guidelines for expectant mothers with Zika concluded that abortions can be carried out at up to 24 weeks in case of serious birth defects.Thailand has said it is considering testing all pregnant women for Zika.Thailand has confirmed 392 cases of Zika since January, with 39 pregnant women among them, while the wealthy city-state of Singapore has recorded 393 cases, including 16 pregnant women.
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