Thailand’s ruling military is considering draft laws to ban commercial surrogacy, creating uncertainty for Australians who already have pregnant surrogates in the country.
The changes come in the wake of controversy surrounding a West Australian couple accused by their Thai surrogate of abandoning their newborn son – known as baby Gammy, who has Down syndrome – and only taking home his healthy twin sister.
It was later revealed father David Farnell has 22 child sex convictions, including unlawful and indecent dealing with girls as young as seven when he was in his 20s, but he says the girl is “100 per cent safe” in his care.
Thailand’s newly formed national assembly, which is heavily dominated by members of the military, has now been handed the draft laws.
When approved, they will mean surrogacy can only take place when a married couple and a relative are involved.
The laws may also include a provision for a baby to remain with the surrogate for between three and six months for breastfeeding.
Parents who have had children through surrogates in Australia say the thriving overseas surrogacy market is being fuelled by messy Australian laws.
The surrogate will also be considered as the child’s legal mother.