Dominican vote opens door to possible easing of total abortion ban

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Dominican vote opens door to possible easing of total abortion ban

Anastasia Moloney
July 13, 2017

BOGOTA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Congress in the Dominican Republic rejected upholding the nation's total ban on abortion this week, approving a step that would allow the procedure for ending life-threatening pregnancies and those resulting from rape or incest.

The lawmakers in the lower house voted against a decision in May by the Dominican Senate, which turned down recommendations made by President Danilo Medina to amend the criminal code and ease the nation's abortion ban.

Continued at source: Reuters: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-dominican-abortion-women-idUSKBN19Y2I5

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Major Victory for Women in Dominican Republic as Law Criminalizing Abortion Gets Stalled

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Major Victory for Women in Dominican Republic as Law Criminalizing Abortion Gets Stalled

Published 11 July 2017

Opening avenues for discussion over decriminalizing abortion, the Dominican Republic Chamber of Deputies ruled against a new Penal Code on Tuesday that would have prohibited abortion under any circumstances.

"This historic event marks a milestone for those who defend the right to autonomy," Colectiva Mujer y Salud, a non-profit organization, said in a statement at the end of the Lower House vote.

Hours before the meeting, members of the human rights organizations and women health collectives held a demonstration outside the Congress.

Continued at source: Telesurtv: http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Major-Victory-for-Women-in-Dominican-Republic-as-Law-Criminalizing-Abortion-Gets-Stalled-20170711-0032.html

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Dominican Women Take to the Streets to Demand Abortion Rights

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Dominican Women Take to the Streets to Demand Abortion Rights

Published 25 June 2017

The Dominican Republic records one of the region's highest rates of maternal mortality with 106 victims for every 100,000 births.

Hundreds of women took to the streets of the capital of the Dominican Republic Sunday, demanding the country's lawmakers approve a bill that would decriminalize abortion when the pregnancy is threatening the mother's life, when it's the result of a rape, or when the fetus won't be able to survive outside the uterus.

Continued at source: TelesurTV: http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Dominican-Women-Take-to-the-Streets-to-Demand-Abortion-Rights-20170625-0030.html

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Dominican Republic to uphold total ban on abortion

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Dominican Republic to uphold total ban on abortion

On May 31, the Dominican Senate voted to uphold a total ban on abortion. Even in cases of rape and incest, and when the woman’s life is in danger.
June 1, 2017 by Raquel Rosario Sanchez

On May 31, the Dominican Senate voted to uphold a total ban on abortion. The country is among six countries worldwide that have banned abortion in all circumstances, including when the life of the mother is in danger. Others are: Nicaragua, El Salvador, Vatican City, Malta, and Chile. The Senate had the opportunity to change the grim situation of reproductive rights and access in the country on Wednesday, however, they voted to uphold the archaic legislation by a margin of 27 to two.

Continued at source: Feminist Current: http://www.feministcurrent.com/2017/06/01/dominican-republic-uphold-total-ban-abortion/

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Dominican Republic: Senate faces golden opportunity to decriminalize abortion

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Dominican Republic: Senate faces golden opportunity to decriminalize abortion
31 May 2017

Senators in the Dominican Republic must scrap one of the world’s most restrictive laws on abortion and begin to protect the rights of millions of women and girls, Amnesty International said ahead of a vote that could decriminalize abortion in certain circumstances.

“Senators in the Dominican Republic have a golden opportunity to protect the lives of millions of women and girls. They must seize the moment and scrap one of the world’s most restrictive abortion laws contained in a Criminal Code which dates back to the 19th century,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

Continued at source: Amnesty International: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2017/05/dominican-republic-senate-faces-golden-opportunity-to-decriminalize-abortion/

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Return Of ‘Global Gag Rule’ Could Be Setback For Health Care, Abortion Rights In Dominican Republic

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Return Of 'Global Gag Rule' Could Be Setback For Health Care, Abortion Rights In Dominican Republic
By Rodrigo Cervantes
Published: Monday, April 10, 2017

SANTO DOMINGO — While politicians in Arizona debate the possibility of more regulations on abortions, in the Dominican Republic, in contrast, the debate centers on its legalization. But recent pro-life policies in the United States could reverse course for Dominican health services.

Near the boisterous Washington Avenue in Santo Domingo, a battling women’s rights organization is in hiding.

La Colectiva Mujer y Salud looks like any other house — for a reason. It had to remove its name from the facade after receiving threats from those who oppose its cause.

La Colectiva, as some people call it, has been on the front line of a struggle to decriminalize abortion. The Dominican Republic is currently one of the six countries in the world where a woman can go to jail for getting an abortion — and so can whoever helps, including doctors.

Continued at source: KJZZ: http://kjzz.org/content/458266/return-global-gag-rule-could-be-setback-health-care-abortion-rights-dominican

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U.S. gag rule garrotes global health

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U.S. gag rule garrotes global health

By Sue Davis
Posted on February 5, 2017

The first action President Trump took on his first work day in office was to sign a memorandum signaling a full-fledged attack on health care around the world. He made this assault, directed ostensibly at women’s health and rights, on Jan. 23, the day after the 44th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and two days after the 5-million-global Women’s March. Roe v. Wade was the Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion in the U.S.

Continued at link
Source, Workers' World: http://www.workers.org/2017/02/05/u-s-gag-rule-garrotes-global-health/#.WJj5G7qXDMg

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UN rights experts urge legislators to back Dominican Republic’s stand on abortion

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UN rights experts urge legislators to back Dominican Republic’s stand on abortion
by Safe Abortion, Jan 31, 2017

GENEVA (25 January 2017) – A group of United Nations human rights experts* today urged all Dominican Republic legislators to protect women and girls’ rights to sexual and reproductive health in the country by supporting President Danilo Medina’s position against regressive amendments of the Penal Code regarding abortion.

Since the beginning of the debate on amendments to the Penal Code in 2014, the experts’ group have communicated their concerns to the Government on several occasions.

The experts’ latest call comes as the Commission appointed to examine the presidential observations to the amendments proposed by Congress prepares to issue its report, which the Senate will subsequently vote on. On 19 December 2016, President Danilo Medina vetoed the new version of the Criminal Code representing a grave regression for women’s right to health.

“We sincerely hope that the Dominican Congress will finally seize this historical moment to mark its commitment towards eliminating gender discrimination in its legislation and to advance women’s and adolescents’ sexual and reproductive rights, in accordance with their international human rights obligations,” they stated.

Under the Congress proposed amendment, terminating a pregnancy would only be available in one case: when there is a risk for the life of the pregnant woman or girl. However, the 2014 version of the text partially decriminalized the access to abortion services under three circumstances, including when the life of a pregnant woman or girl was at risk, when the fetus could not survive outside the womb and when the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest.

“Denying women and girls’ access to safe abortion services in cases of health reasons, serious foetal impairment and pregnancy resulting from rape and incest, will certainly cause excessive and long-lasting physical and psychological suffering to many women,” the experts stressed.

“Reducing access to such health services violates women’s and girls’ right to be protected against gender-based discrimination and may amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment,” they said.

The UN experts also warned that restrictive abortion laws exacerbate the risks to the health and safety of the affected women, driving them to undergo sometimes desperate life-threating solutions. “It has been demonstrated that countries with easy access to information and to modern methods of contraception and where abortion is legal, have the lowest rates of abortion,” they noted.

The human rights experts pointed out that this is the last chance, under the current Government, for the situation of women’s sexual and reproductive rights to be improved since President Medina had rejected a similar reform proposed in 2014.

“Should President Medina’s observations not be adopted, this would be a tragedy for women in the Dominican Republic and a deplorable example for the region”, the experts concluded.

The President’s veto and proposed amendments could only be circumvented if both chambers of the Congress (Chamber of Deputies and Senate) adopt the initial amendments proposed with a majority of two-thirds of the members.

*SIGNATORIES TO THE STATEMENT: Alda Facio, President of the Working Group on the issue of discrimintion against women in law and practice; Dainius Pūras, Special Rapporteur on the right to health; Dubravka Šimonović, Special Rapporteur on violence against women; and Nils Melzer, Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

FULL TEXT IN ENGLISH: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=21119&LangID=E

+ EN ESPAÑOL: http://www.ohchr.org/SP/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=21119&LangID=S

 

Source, International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/un-rights-experts-urge-legislators-to-back-dominican-republics-stand-on-abortion/

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Feminists Protest Against Dominican Republic Abortion Ban

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Published 18 December 2016, TelesurTV

Rights groups say blanket bans on abortion are a leading cause of maternal mortality because they force women to undergo dangerous backstreet abortions.

Hundreds of people took to the streets of the capital of the Dominican Republic Sunday, protesting against the recent approval of a new Criminal Code condemning abortion, including when the pregnancy is the result of rape, or when it endangers the mother's life.

The protesters gathered in Independence Park, demanding President Danilo Medina veto the bill approved earlier today by senators.

[continued at link]
Source: TelesurTV

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The 9 countries with the most draconian abortion laws in the world

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The 9 countries with the most draconian abortion laws in the world

by Andree Gorman
Dec. 15, 2016, 11:05

LONDON — In November, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she would explore offering Northern Irish women a free and legal means to terminate their pregnancy.

Abortion is only legal in Northern Ireland when a pregnant woman's life is at risk, but the NHS has so far refused to pay for the procedure for those who travel to Britain seeking help.

Sturgeon's plan may offer a way around this. In doing so, she also cast light on abortion laws.

Around the world, 58 of 196 countries provide abortions on request, and 134 of 196 countries only allow abortions to preserve a woman's physical health.

Six countries — El Salvador, Malta, the Vatican, Chile, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua — still refuse abortions to women under any circumstances, even if it's to save her life. It means that under many circumstances, such as rape, incest, or if the fetus has a severe abnormality, women still must bring a pregnancy to term.

Developing countries, which have the strictest laws around ending a pregnancy, have the highest unsafe abortion rates. It is estimated that around the world, 78,000 deaths result from unsafe abortions every year. These are the countries with the strictest abortion laws around the globe.

[continued at link]
Source: Business Insider, http://www.businessinsider.com/countries-strictest-abortion-laws-2016-12/#in-the-philippines-women-are-technically-allowed-to-have-abortions-to-save-their-own-lives-but-the-law-does-not-explicitly-state-this-8

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