By Suzanne McLaughlin
LAST week a 10-year-old Brazilian girl wearing a little flowery dress and cheap
flip-flops was bundled into a car boot clutching her fluffy toy frog. She was
driven through a back door to a hospital guarded by military police past a
throng of right-wing and religious extremists in order to have a termination.
Abortion is allowed in Brazil in just three instances: to save a woman’s life,
if it is the result of rape and if the child is dead. This little girl was
living through two of these circumstances. She was a victim of rape and her
life was in imminent danger and so the judge in her home area ruled that the
abortion should go ahead.
Ten-year-old girl was forced to fly more than 900 miles to north-eastern city of Recife for the procedure after being raped
Tom Phillips and Caio Barretto Briso in Rio de Janeiro
Mon 17 Aug 2020
Scores of Brazilian women have taken to the streets to protect a 10-year-old child who was being persecuted by religious extremists for trying to legally undergo an abortion after being raped, allegedly by her uncle.
The girl, from São Mateus, a small town in the south-eastern state of Espírito Santo, was admitted to hospital on 7 August complaining of abdominal pain and doctors confirmed she was pregnant.
by Bhavi Mandalia
August 16, 2020
A pregnancy at 10 years kills. This message,
in the form of hashtag, has taken over Brazilian social networks in recent
days, after the case of a 10-year-old girl who became pregnant after being
raped came to light. The victim, who resides in the city of São Mateus, in the
State of Espírito Santo, went to the hospital on August 8 accompanied by her
aunt, who, according to the report of the Military Police, told the doctors
that she believed she was. pregnant. After a blood test confirmed that she was
three months old, the girl told doctors and a social worker that her uncle had
raped her since she was six years old and that she never said anything for fear
of his death threats. The Police and the Guardianship Council investigated the
case. The girl was transferred to a center for minors while doctors and the
Justice analyzed the interruption of the pregnancy, guaranteed by law in cases
There would be no death, bleeding or suffering if abortion were recognized for what it is: a medical necessity
Debora Diniz and Giselle Carino
01 jul 2020
The news report described her as an anonymous 31-year-old woman. The subheading read: “Case happened in Bom Jesus do Norte” – or Good Jesus of the North. From what we know, she was the first woman to die from a clandestine abortion in Brazil during the coronavirus pandemic. The nameless woman “was two months pregnant,” according to her husband. Twice she sought help in spaces of death, at unsafe abortion houses. She tried a hose, potassium permanganate, syringes. She died of cardiac arrest. Why did she persist? We do not know, nor do her innermost reasons matter. It is enough to know that she was a woman determined not to be forced into maternity during the pandemic.
The pandemic killed her. Cause and effect can be debated in this narrative, that is true. Her death was not from Covid-19, but from the policies that rule women’s bodies as if they were material to be controlled by criminal law.
When Abortion Is Illegal, Women Rarely Die. But They Still Suffer.
A look at what happens when abortion is forbidden, from countries where it still is
Oct 11, 2018
In August, the Argentine Senate rejected a bill that would have decriminalized abortion in the country within the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. Less than a week later, the newspaper Clairín reported that a 34-year-old woman died from septic shock after attempting to terminate her own pregnancy using parsley.
The woman, referred to only as Elizabeth, became one of the 40-some Argentine women who die each year from unsafe abortions. “Illegality forces the poorest women to use the most desperate practices,” one doctor was quoted as saying.
Supreme Court of Brazil: Public Hearing on the Decriminalization of Abortion, August 3rd & 6th 2018– Antecedents, Content, Meanings
9 October 2018
by Sonia Corrêa, Sexuality Policy Watch
On August 3rd and 6th 2018, the Supreme Court of Brazil held a Public Hearing on ADPF 442/2017, a juridical instrument that challenges the constitutionality of the articles in the 1940 Penal Code that criminalize abortion. This challenge was presented to the Supreme Court in March 2017. In her opening remarks, the then Chief Justice Carmen Lucia defined the hearing as a space opened by the Court for society to manifest its views on the matter and raise arguments that could contribute to a more just judgment.
Presidential Candidates Need to Heed Abortion Debate
September 24, 2018
Margaret Wurth, Senior Researcher, Children's Rights Division
Activists around the world will mark the Global Day of Action for Access to Safe and Legal Abortion on September 28. Like several other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, Brazil is in the midst of a vigorous public debate around abortion following a recent Supreme Court hearing on the issue. Brazil’s criminal code still severely restricts access to legal abortion. But the fact that the issue is being discussed openly, including in the presidential campaign, and that women are coming forward to share their stories of ending a pregnancy, is already a significant step forward.
Under the criminal code in Brazil, abortion is illegal except in cases of rape, when necessary to save a woman’s life, or when the fetus suffers from anencephaly – a fatal congenital brain disorder. Activists have fought for years to ease the country’s abortion restrictions, citing evidence that criminal penalties do nothing to reduce abortion, but instead lead women to risk their health and lives to terminate pregnancies clandestinely.
They Lost Argentina’s Abortion Vote, but Advocates Started a Movement
By Daniel Politi and Ernesto Londoño
Aug. 9, 2018
BUENOS AIRES — They narrowly lost the vote. But as supporters of a bill to legalize abortion in Argentina began to shake off a stinging defeat in the Senate on Thursday, they took consolation in having galvanized a reproductive-rights movement across Latin America and began to consider how to redirect their activism.
A coalition of young female lawmakers who stunned the political establishment by putting abortion rights at the top of the legislative agenda this year seemed to be on the verge of a historic victory with the bill. But intense lobbying by Catholic Church leaders and staunch opposition in conservative northern provinces persuaded enough senators to vote against it.
Tensions flare in Brazil as supreme court considers loosening abortion restrictions
by Marina Lopes
August 6 2018
SAO PAULO — Brazil’s supreme court is considering decriminalizing abortion through the 12th week of pregnancy, stoking activists' hopes that the country could follow other Latin American nations in loosening abortion restrictions.
Hearings on the issue, which began Friday and continued on Monday, included testimony from dozens of doctors, specialists and religious leaders. Tensions flared in the days leading up to the hearings, with activists on both sides speaking out. Outside the supreme court on Friday, women donned red robes resembling those worn on the hit TV show, “The Handmaid’s Tale,” in favor of decriminalization. Meanwhile, #AbortionisaCrime trended on Twitter, and churches sounded their bells in protest.
Brazil’s Supreme Court Considers Decriminalizing Abortion
By Manuela Andreoni and Ernesto Londoño
Aug. 3, 2018
Leer en español
PETRÓPOLIS, Brazil — For three days after she had an illegal abortion, Ingriane Barbosa Carvalho hemorrhaged in silence. Even as she writhed in pain, and an infection caused by the botched procedure spread, Ms. Carvalho insisted to relatives she was just nursing a stomach bug.
By the time she sought medical help, it was too late. Ms. Carvalho, a 31-year-old mother of three, died seven days later.