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Judge hears arguments in challenge to Arkansas abortion laws

Judge hears arguments in challenge to Arkansas abortion laws. (Courtesy: KATV)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Abortion rights supporters say four new Arkansas laws they're trying to block would create unnecessary delays for women seeking the procedure and could effectively require a partner's consent beforehand, while the state says the groups are coming up with problems that don't exist in the new restrictions.

A federal judge heard arguments for roughly two hours Thursday over the lawsuit filed challenging the new laws, three of which are set to take effect Aug. 1. The American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Reproductive Rights are suing the state over the restrictions.

The laws being challenged include a ban on a common second-trimester abortion procedure. The groups are also challenging part of a "sex-selection" abortion ban that they say would create delays, and new requirements on fetal tissue disposal.

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