India – 5,80,100 abortions performed in Assam every year: Report

5,80,100 abortions performed in Assam every year: Report
An estimated 90% of the abortions occurring in health facilities in the State are surgical, while about 10% are done using Medical Methods of Abortion.

By Bikash Singh
Aug 20, 2019

GUWAHATI: The study on ‘Unintended Pregnancy, Abortion and Postabortion Care in Assam—2015’ conducted jointly by Indian Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, Population Council, New Delhi and New York-based Guttmacher Institute, highlights the importance of access to and quality of safe abortion services in the State.

The study found that an estimated 5,80,100 abortions are performed in Assam every year. These include abortions taking place both in health facilities and in other settings. The State’s abortion rate was found to be 66 terminations per 1,000 women in the reproductive age group.

Continued: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/580100-abortions-performed-in-assam-every-year-report/articleshow/70751757.cms

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Singapore – Minimum age may force girls to abort foetus overseas or without clinical help

Minimum age may force girls to abort foetus overseas or without clinical help

By Ashton Ng Jing Kai
Published 17 August, 2019

I refer to Voices writer Zhang Jieqiang’s letter, “Set minimum age for women seeking abortion” (Aug 15).

It noted the existence of a minimum age for sex (16 years old), consuming alcohol (18), buying cigarettes (19), and voting or consenting to marry someone (21).

Based on these facts, the writer argued: “Does it not logically follow that there should be a minimum legal age for abortion?”

Continued: https://www.todayonline.com/voices/minimum-age-may-force-girls-abort-foetus-overseas-or-without-clinical-help

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Malaysia – Way to solve baby dumping

Letters: Way to solve baby dumping

Dr SP Choong
Thursday, 08 Aug 2019

I REFER to the report on the high incidence of baby dumping in Malaysia “Baby Dumping: Three a week” (Sunday Star, Aug 3). This comes as no surprise to those dealing with women’s reproductive health in Malaysia.

This problem, together with related issues like teenage pregnancy, child marriage and the decreasing age of sexual debut among teenagers appear regularly as “shocking news” to elicit a response from politicians and policy makers.

We note that the Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and her deputy Hannah Yeoh have responded to this continuing crisis by launching the “Save a Life Campaign” (pic), where the ministry would strengthen its efforts on reproductive health education for teenagers (focusing only on abstinence) as well as providing a hotline for those needing advice on how to continue their pregnancy. Meanwhile, OrphanCare would facilitate adoptions for mothers who wish to give up their child anonymously. However, we doubt if those measures alone can solve the problem.

Read more at https://www.thestar.com.my/opinion/letters/2019/08/08/way-to-solve-baby-dumping#VcgL4FYWo5HDBp6j.99

Continued; https://www.thestar.com.my/opinion/letters/2019/08/08/way-to-solve-baby-dumping

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India – A change in the abortion law?

A change in the abortion law?

August 8, 2019
By Kerean Watts

Could India’s abortion law soon change? Steps may be taken towards amending the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, as the Centre has informed the Delhi High Court it is consulting with ministries on the same.

Social activist Amit Sahni filed a public interest litigation (PIL) before the High Court earlier this year, seeking that the gestation period in which abortion is permitted be extended to between 24 and 26 weeks. Currently, Indian law permits abortion only in the first twenty weeks of pregnancy in cases where “the pregnancy would involve a risk to the life of the pregnant woman or of grave injury physical or mental health; or there is a substantial risk that if the child were born, it would suffer from such physical or mental abnormalities as to be seriously handicapped.” This would require the assent of one medical practitioner in the first twelve weeks and two medical practitioners thereafter.

Continued: https://www.healthissuesindia.com/2019/08/08/a-change-in-the-abortion-law/

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Philippines – Lives in danger: Extrajudicial killings and the denial of abortion

[OPINION] Lives in danger: Extrajudicial killings and the denial of abortion
Permitting access to safe and legal abortion saves lives; extrajudicial killings take them away

Jihan Jacob
July 29, 2019

While President Duterte left out the status of women’s reproductive health and rights in the country from his 4th State of the Nation Address, the recent UN Human Rights Council resolution and false claims against those who advanced it demonstrate that the government still has a long way to go in respecting, protecting, and promoting the reproductive rights and human rights of all Filipinos. (READ: Quick point-by-point summary of Duterte's SONA 2019)

For the past 3 years, a slate of extrajudicial killings has been committed as part of the government’s anti-illegal drug campaign. Thousands have gone missing or have been killed, prompting the United Nations Human Rights Council to adopt a resolution condemning these acts. It urged the country to prevent more killings, conduct investigations, and ensure accountability.

Government officials who are sympathetic to the campaign have attempted to undermine those who passed the resolution, on the false pretext that such countries lack the moral legitimacy to condemn the Philippines because they permit legal abortion.

Continued: https://www.rappler.com/move-ph/ispeak/236392-extrajudicial-killings-legal-abortion

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Opinion: India’s government must prioritize women’s needs — including SRHR

Opinion: India's government must prioritize women's needs — including SRHR

By Vinoj Manning
24 July 2019

The 2019 general elections in India saw a record turnout of women — equal to the percentage of male voters — and indicating that women expect the majority government of the day to prioritize and address their needs.

One of their primary expectations is improved access to women’s sexual reproductive health and rights services.

Continued: https://www.devex.com/news/opinion-india-s-government-must-prioritize-women-s-needs-including-srhr-95264

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What It’s Like to Get an Abortion as an Unmarried Woman in India

What It's Like to Get an Abortion as an Unmarried Woman in India
In a country where stigma and shame drive many women towards unsafe abortions, this is an account of one woman who, unlike many, survived to tell the tale.

by Pallavi Pundir
23 July 2019

For far too long—and perhaps even now—conversations around abortions in India have been the stuff made up of whispers, stigma, and shame. While having pre-marital sex is, in itself, a big taboo, that of having a child born out of wedlock is even more so. Abortion in this scenario—in a space that is safe, non-judgemental and legit—is mostly unthinkable. This is a country where unsafe abortions are the third-leading cause of maternal deaths, and 80 percent of Indian women have no clue that abortion within 20 weeks is actually legal. And while studies have shown that unsafe abortions stem from lack of awareness, the societal norms around reproduction almost always dictate how and when women should be giving birth.

Continued: https://www.vice.com/en_in/article/mb88gp/what-its-like-to-get-abortion-as-an-unmarried-woman-in-india

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Gender-selective abortion? No girls born in 3 months across 132 Indian villages

Gender-selective abortion? No girls born in 3 months across 132 Indian villages

Published time: 23 Jul, 2019

A probe into sex-selective abortions has been kicked off in northern India, after government data revealed that of the 216 children born across 132 villages in the past three months, not a single one was female.

Local authorities in Uttarakhand state fear that villagers around the town of Uttarkashi are selectively aborting babies in an attempt to avoid having girls. Though female feticide has been explicitly banned in India since 1994, the practice still continues in rural areas, where girls are often considered a financial liability for families.

Continued: https://www.rt.com/news/464806-gender-selective-abortion-girls-india/

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South Korea – Calls grow to legalize abortion drugs

Calls grow to legalize abortion drugs

Posted : 2019-07-21
By Bahk Eun-ji

Concern is rising over the growing illegal online sale of "abortion drugs," the effects of which have not been proven.

With a law banning abortion ruled unconstitutional earlier this year, women's rights groups say the nation needs urgently to legalize the prescription and sale of abortion drugs so women can use safe and authorized medicine.

Continued: http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2019/07/119_272634.html

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Expert tells why online sale of abortion pills on the rise

Expert tells why online sale of abortion pills on the rise

Ainaa Aiman
July 20, 2019

PETALING JAYA: A reproductive health expert has attributed the high online demand for abortion pills to a lack of facilities for women needing to terminate their pregnancies.

Dr John Teo, a medical adviser to the Malaysian Federation of Reproductive Health Associations, called for an increase in accessible facilities but cautioned that they must be closely monitored to ensure the safety of their services.

Continued: https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2019/07/20/expert-tells-why-online-sale-of-abortion-pills-on-the-rise/

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