This Boat Sails Women Into International Waters To Give Abortions


This Boat Sails Women Into International Waters To Give Abortions
“Abortion is a matter of social justice.”

By Sarah Ruiz-Grossman
May 05, 2017

A tiny nonprofit is bringing major attention to some countries’ restrictive reproductive health laws by delivering abortion pills to women ― in international waters.

Dutch group Women on Waves navigates its 36-foot sailboat to the coasts of countries that restrict abortion, brings women aboard, and sails them into international waters to give them abortion pills for free. Women on Waves steers its passengers more than 12 miles off the coast, where the boat operates under the laws of its country’s flag ― Austria, which allows abortion during the first three months of pregnancy.

Continued at source: Huffington Post:

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Dutch ‘abortion boat’ arrives off the coast of Mexico


Dutch 'abortion boat' arrives off the coast of Mexico
April 21, 2017

Women on Waves says it is offering free, legal, medical abortions till nine weeks of pregnancy in international waters.

Women on Waves has visited waters off Guatemala, Ireland, Morocco, Poland, Portugal and Spain [File: Reuters]

A Dutch sailing boat offering abortions has arrived in international waters off Mexico's west coast, according to the organisation which operates it.

The vessel, which operates often in defiance of some countries' laws, took up position on Friday off Guerrero state on Mexico's southern Pacific coast.

Women on Waves, a non-profit group, said in an online statement that it was offering "free legal medical abortions till nine weeks of pregnancy" to women who needed them. It said its ship "has all required permits" and would receive women until Sunday.

Continued at link: Al Jazeera:

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Guatemala Expels ‘Abortion Ship’ Activists From Washington State


Guatemala Expels 'Abortion Ship' Activists From Washington State
By Tom Banse

Originally published on March 2, 2017 6:30 pm

A husband and wife from Port Townsend, Washington, are on their way home after being expelled from Guatemala. The Washingtonians and several other international activists narrowly avoided arrest during a maritime abortion rights protest.

Merilee Nyland Evans and her husband Daniel volunteered to go to Guatemala aboard a 36-foot sailboat run by an activist group named "Women on Waves." The Dutch-based group sails to countries with restrictive abortion laws to offer free abortions at sea.

Continued at source: KNKX News:

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Guatemala authorities expel Dutch ‘abortion ship’


Guatemala authorities expel Dutch ‘abortion ship’

Feb 27, 2017

GUATEMALA CITY – Guatemala has expelled a Dutch “abortion ship” carrying activists who had vowed to help women circumvent the country’s long-standing prohibition against terminating pregnancies, the army said Sunday.

Activists from the group Women on Waves had been guarded aboard their moored sailboat by a navy vessel, Saul Tobar, commander of Puerto Quetzal on Guatemala’s Pacific coast, told reporters.

“Notified of its expulsion from the country’s territorial waters for having failed to comply with immigration regulations” late Saturday, the crew requested permission to set sail, he said. The activists saw no patients.

Continued at source: Japan Times:

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Guatemalan immigration office expels Women on Waves abortion ship


Guatemalan immigration office expels Women on Waves abortion ship
The Dutch boat offers free abortion services in countries where terminating pregnancies is banned.

By Ananya Roy
February 25, 2017

Guatemalan authorities on Friday (24 February) expelled a Dutch boat run by Women on Waves, a non-profit organisation (NGO) that provides free abortion services to women living in countries where the procedure is banned.

The boat was detained on Thursday, a day after it landed at a private pier in the Port of San Jose at Marina Pez Vela, about 120km south of the capital Guatemala City.
Continued at source: IB Times:

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Zika-fighting ‘abortion ship’ detained by Guatemala


Zika-fighting ‘abortion ship’ detained by Guatemala
25 Feb, 2017

Guatemala has detained a ship off its coast offering abortion services to women, ordering the expulsion of the vessel, owned by a Dutch non-profit organization, and its crew members.

The ship, run by Women on Waves, offers free abortions to women living in countries where the procedure is banned. The group carry out terminations in international waters for women up to ten weeks pregnant, and also offer sexual health and contraceptive advice.

The group said the abortion hotline was receiving hundreds of calls from women looking for information and hoping to schedule a visit.

Continued at source: Russia Today:

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Women on Waves Boat Detained in Guatemala


BREAKING: Women on Waves Boat Detained in Guatemala

Media Contact: Leticia Zenevich,

National Network of Abortion Funds,

February 25, 2017 — Women on Waves, a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds, works to provide contraceptives, information, training, workshops, and safe and legal abortion services outside territorial waters in countries where abortion is illegal. In international waters (12 miles off the coast of a country) any laws banning abortion do not apply. Women on Waves provides these vital reproductive health services using a boat while working in close cooperation with local organizations to respond to urgent medical need and draw public attention to their campaign.

Since February 23rd, a Women on Waves boat offering safe abortions at the harbour Marina Pez Vela outside of Guatemala, has been detained in port. Rebecca Gomperts, Director of Women on Waves, and Quetzali Cerezo, Director of AME Guatemala, stayed on the ship today after rejecting an unlawful order revoking the licenses of the ship. They explained that the letter delivered by the Guatemalan army “did not mention the possibilities to appeal and it was not an official court order. When we mentioned this and refused to sign for the receipt, they withdrew the letter. So the licenses are all still valid.” Women in Guatemala City subsequently began protesting in front of the Ministry of Defense, requesting that the Women on Waves boat remain in Guatemala to provide access to safe abortion.

Continued at source: National Network of Abortion Funds:

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Guatemala: The Last Resort Women Are Turning to Because of Illegal Abortion


The Last Resort Women Are Turning to Because of Illegal Abortion
February 24th 2017
By: Charles Davis

A pregnant woman in Guatemala generally has one legal option: give birth. In Guatemala abortion, as in much of Latin America, is illegal except when the authorities determine it necessary to save the mother’s life. In practice that means only the rich, or those who can afford a flight to Miami, can exercise their right to choose in a manner that is safe.

Those who are poor — nearly half the country lives on $1.50 a day — are forced to exercise their reproductive rights in a rather more dangerous way: in unlicensed clinics that, according to the Guttmacher Institute, send a third of the estimated 65,000 people who use them each year to the hospital with complications.

Some women with a boat want to help change that.

Continued at source: ATTN:

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Guatemalan army declare they will denounce the abortion ship without legal grounds


Guatemalan army declare they will denounce the abortion ship without legal grounds
Feb 23, 2017
Women on Waves

The abortion ship has all required permits to enter, stay and leave Guatemala and has arrived safely yesterday at harbour Marina Pez Vela. Access to the boat has been shut down during the press conference. As the activists started the press conference, they were expelled from the venue by the administration of Marina Pez Vela without further explanations. Since the actions started this morning, a series of violations have been perpetrated against the boat campaign. The abortion ship is now detained. These actions not only have no legal grounds but also constitute a serious breach of the International Convention of the Sea, freedom of expression (Article 18 of the International Declaration of Human Rights), freedom of movement and Guatemalan citizens' right to movement. The Guatemalan army has declared they will denounce the abortion ship, which has no legal grounds.

Despite the fact that the abortion ship has followed all regulations, the ship was detained and the Guatemalan army has promised to denounce the boat and are now obstructing a lawful protest against the State's restrictions on the Guatemalan women's right to safe abortion.

According to the International Convention of Sea a ship can only be detained on the bases of civil proceedings and environmental pollution and not for any activities that concern the transport of people on board the ship. So there are no legal grounds on which the abortion ship can be detained or arrested (1).

The ship campaign, a joint action brought together by Women on Waves and Guatemalan organisations, aims to highlight the violation of human rights caused by the existing abortion laws in Guatemala. All abortions that can be performed onboard are carried on in international waters, where the boat is under European law and outside the jurisdiction of Guatemala.

Continued at source: Women on Waves:

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Dutch ‘abortion ship’ due in Guatemala


Dutch 'abortion ship' due in Guatemala
Published Feb 23, 2017

The Hague: A Dutch "abortion ship" was Thursday due to arrive in a Guatemalan port to provide free help to women to end unwanted pregnancies, aiming to circumvent the country's strict laws.

Abortion is only allowed in Guatemala in cases where the mother's life is in danger, the non-profit organisation Women on Waves said, adding there are some 65,000 illegal and unsafe abortions in the Central American country every year.

The ship will visit the harbour of the Puerto San Jose, about 100 kilometres (60 miles) south of Guatemala City and will stay for five days, the organisation said in a statement.

"The ship can provide women with free legal medical abortions till 10 weeks of pregnancy after sailing to international waters, 12 miles outside Guatemala," it added.

Continued at source: Deccan Chronicle:

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