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Right To Life New Zealand brought the case against the Abortion Supervisory Committee, accusing it of failing to safeguard the human rights of unborn children.A graph showing the rise in the number of abortions in New Zealand.

Abortions are only legal in New Zealand under conditions that include when pregnancy would endanger the mother's life, her physical or mental health, or if there is a risk of the foetus being handicapped.

But the High Court Judge criticised the Committee for not making sure the abortion laws are followed and said statistics "tend to confirm... New Zealand essentially has abortion on request."

What does this mean for the abortion legislation? Will politicians find themselves tackling this controversial subject in election year?

Radio New Zealand's court reporter Anne Marie May investigates.

Written and presented by Anne Marie May. Produced for Radio New Zealand by Sue Ingram.