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Newborn third child triggers online debate

By Zhao Ruixue in Jinan | | Updated: 2019-11-04 16:29
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A 67-year-old woman who gave birth to a girl last month has triggered heated discussions online on whether the couple should be fined for having a third child, a breach of the current family planning policy.

The health regulator in Zaozhuang, Shandong province, has conducted an investigation into the case and will announce the result soon, according to a source to the city's health regulator.

"We didn't mean to violate the law. I will put forward an administrative review or initiate a lawsuit if I am fined," Huang Weiping, the husband, told Beijing News.

Huang said their age when having the third child is not within the range of accordance with the law. Prior to the newborn girl, the couple has two adult children.

Under Chinese laws, couples are currently not allowed to have more than two children, though the government has been less strict on applying the rules since 2016 when it revised the family planning policy to allow all couples to have two children.

The central and local governments have implemented measures including tax cuts and prolonging maternity leave to encourage couples to have more children, since the number of new births has dropped continuously even after revision to the family planning policy in 2016.

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