Kenya – Condoms, abortions, LGBT rights: Controversial cases filed in court this year

Condoms, abortions, LGBT rights: Controversial cases filed in court this year

Jan. 02, 2019

As the year ends, there are several cases which stand out having been filed in court which have caught the eye of the public and have been a trending topic on all social media platforms.

The recent ban of abortion at the Maries Stopes Clinics countrywide drew mixed reactions on social media with some supporting the move and the other half condemning the decision.


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Ireland – GPs given clinical guidelines for abortion services

GPs given clinical guidelines for abortion services

Wednesday, 19 Dec 2018
By Fergal Bowers, Health Correspondent

The Irish College of General Practitioners has issued family doctors with interim clinical guidelines, for doctors who wish to provide termination of pregnancy services once it is legalised.

It said that GPs must have access to an ultrasound facility, if a query about the gestation period, or complications arise.


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Ireland – ‘Doctors divided as HSE rushes to tick boxes on abortion’

Maeve Sheehan: 'Doctors divided as HSE rushes to tick boxes on abortion'
Pressure is mounting for the January 1 start date for termination services to be put back

Maeve Sheehan
December 9 2018

There are 22 days to go before the roll-out of abortion services on January 1. It should be a historic occasion when the overwhelming support shown by Irish voters for a woman's right to choose becomes reality.

But as the deadline looms, disquiet among some doctors that it is ambitious to the point of being unsafe has grown louder.


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Abortion in Ireland: A guide to how it will work

Abortion in Ireland: A guide to how it will work
Everything you need to know before the planned introduction of termination services

Dec 7, 2018
Paul Cullen

With just three weeks to go before the planned introduction of abortion in Ireland, there remains widespread scepticism among health professionals that the deadline of January 1st will be met. The legislation to give effect to the measure still has to complete its passage through the Oireachtas and questions about resources and supports have still to be fully answered. The thorny issue of conscientious objection also looms large for many doctors, nurses and pharmacists, and existing Medical Council ethical guidelines governing the medical profession will not be revised in time for the deadline.

Notwithstanding these considerable doubts, the Government and in particular Minister for Health Simon Harris has made the provision of abortion by the start of next month an absolute priority. At this point, it therefore seems likely the service will begin as planned in the New Year.


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Ireland – Abortion guidelines delay fuels fears service will be ‘railroaded through’

Abortion guidelines delay fuels fears service will be 'railroaded through'

Eilish O'Regan and Laura Larkin
December 5 2018

Doctors and hospitals have yet to receive guidelines on how women having abortions will be cared for.

The clinical guidelines are needed to advise and direct GPs and hospital doctors on key areas of care including prevention of complications.


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465,000 illegal abortions performed annually in Kenya

465,000 illegal abortions performed annually in Kenya
Written By: Hallyghan Agade
July 9, 2018

It is estimated that approximately 465,000 illegal abortions are performed in Kenya each year by untrained people.

Center for Reproductive Rights-CRC further says that one out of three girls under the age of 18 experience sexual violence and over 40 percent of pregnancies are unintentional.

However, health practitioners and health rights advocates are blaming Government and religious organizations saying that they are the greatest impediment to advocacy and information regarding Reproductive Health Rights in the country.


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UN Human Rights Council says: reduce maternal mortality and amend the abortion law in Uganda

by Safe Abortion, Nov 25, 2016

Among the recommendations the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) members made to the government of Uganda as part of its review of the country’s human rights record this year was one to revise its abortion legislation.

The Ugandan Center for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) and the Center for Reproductive Rights submitted a shadow letter in March 2016 to the HRC review in which they called for greater attention to all aspects of maternal mortality and morbidity and showed why less improvement has occurred than is hoped for. They also discussed the criminalization of abortion and other reproductive health services as a barrier that interferes with access to safe health care services. They also said: “While the Ugandan government has ratified the Maputo Protocol and has repeatedly recognized unsafe abortion as a leading cause of maternal mortality and morbidity, the government has entered a reservation on this article which would have expanded access to safe abortion. They also expressed concern about the ambiguity and misinformation surrounding the legality of abortion and post-abortion services.

Under Ugandan law, they say, “abortion is permitted only to preserve the life, mental and physical health of the pregnant woman. However, the Ministry of Health’s National Guidelines and Services Standards for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights expands grounds for permitting legal abortion to include cases such as sexual violence and incest and outlines comprehensive abortion and post-abortion care standards. The narrow interpretation of abortion laws by the courts and other government bodies, as well as extremely restricted access to relevant information, have resulted in misinformation about the legality of abortion among the general public, health care providers, law enforcement officers, the judiciary, and regulators… The ambiguity in the law further deters health care professionals from providing safe abortion services… [Yet] most doctors and other trained providers mistakenly believe that there is a complete prohibition on abortion. Due to this, they are reluctant to provide the comprehensive services outlined in the Reproductive Health Guidelines for fear of being subjected to criminal liability.”

In June 2015, the Ugandan Ministry of Health issued “Standards & Guidelines for Reducing Morbidity and Mortality from Unsafe Abortion in Uganda,” which contains “practical and standardized information to various stakeholders from a range of sectors that will help reduce morbidity and mortality due to unsafe abortion.” However, the publication was delayed until recently.

The Ugandan government supported a number of recommendations made at the HRC review, including that they should strengthen measures to fight against maternal mortality and morbidity with a human rights-based approach, ensure a sufficient health budget and full and equal access to health services. They said there was support for strengthening measures to address maternal deaths and ensuring access to reproductive health services, but that abortion law reform was not a priority.

SOURCE: CEHURD Shadow Letter, March 2016 ; Center for Reproductive Rights, 15 November 2016 ; VISUAL

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Source: International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion

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Uganda: Rights Activists, Clerics Clash Over Abortion Bill

By David Mafabi,

Kampala — As the drawn-out debate on legalisation of abortion enters a new phase, human rights activists yesterday clashed with religious leaders over a looming 'Abortion Bill'.

The two highly polarising positions were again cast in sharp contrast with religious leaders flatly reminding the government that abortion is murder, plain and simple.

Across the aisle, firebrands in the activist camp raised the ante, claiming that the church, by its obstinacy, was fuelling maternal mortality and morbidity caused by unsafe abortions in Uganda.

[continued at link]

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