International experts condemn attempt to further restrict abortion in Poland.

International experts condemn attempt to further restrict abortion in Poland.

For immediate release 17-10-2018:

Warsaw, Poland - Women on Waves and the Sisterhood Network teamed up to fight attempts to further restrict abortion rights in Poland. A case bough by the group of Members of the Lower Chamber of The Parliament (Sejm) to the Constitutional Tribunal argues that the current Polish abortion law which allows for a legal abortion in the case of severe fetal malformation, violates the Polish constitutional protection of the life of everyone (incl. fetuses) under the case reference K 13/17.
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Women on Waves, a Dutch non-profit organisation and the Sisterhood Network, an informal support group from Stockholm, Sweden are both supporting women’s right to reproductive freedom by providing access to reproductive healthcare including abortion. Both organizations deal with hundreds of women every month who were denied their right to terminate a pregnancy due to severe fetal anomalies or pregnancy threatening their health or life.

Continued: http://www.womenonwaves.org/en/page/7501/international-experts-condemn-attempt-to-further-restrict-abortion-in-poland

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German anti-abortion activist loses case against injunctions

German anti-abortion activist loses case against injunctions

The Associated Press
September 20, 2018

The European Court of Human Rights has rejected a German anti-abortion activist's case against injunctions ordering him to stop referring to abortions performed by various doctors as "aggravated murder" and comparing them with the Holocaust.

The Strasbourg, France-based court ruled Thursday on a string of cases involving activist Klaus Guenter Annen, who argued that the four injunctions against him issued by German courts interfered with his freedom of expression.

Continued: https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/nation-world/world/article218713625.html

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Removing shackles of abortion restrictions in Ireland

Removing shackles of abortion restrictions in Ireland

July 18, 2018

The landslide victory of the Yes campaign in the May 2018 referendum paves the way for an end to decades of harms caused by the abortion ban (the 8th amendment) of the Irish Constitution.

Inserted in 1983, this provision prevented legal abortion in all cases except risk to a pregnant woman’s life. It has forced thousands of women and girls to leave Ireland to access care, to undergo illegal abortions or to continue pregnancy against their will.

Continued: https://www.figo.org/news/removing-shackles-abortion-restrictions-ireland

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Why the fight for legal abortion is only half the battle

Why the fight for legal abortion is only half the battle

July 13, 2018
By Shannon Kowalski and Susan Wood

For years, Irish women have been forced to travel abroad or seek underground abortion services. But, a historic vote in May delivered a landslide rebuke that rescinded the country’s constitutional provision recognizing the equal rights to life of both a woman and a fetus, opening the door to expanded reproductive autonomy. The euphoria over this victory has barely settled, and already steps are being taken to curb Irish women’s hard-won right. The new front of resistance to women’s rights emerges from those who seek to allow medical professionals to deny women abortion services based on their own religious or moral beliefs. It would be a mistake for Ireland’s legislators to allow such refusals, which ultimately endanger and discriminate against women.

Since 2000, 28 countries have liberalized their abortion laws. In response to this progress, anti-choice advocates and policy makers have mounted a deliberate campaign to undermine women’s access to legal abortion services. A primary tactic has been establishing laws and policies that allow doctors to opt out of fulfilling their professional obligation to provide health care services on the basis of their personal beliefs. The use of these so-called “conscience” claims is on the rise worldwide.

Continued: http://www.euronews.com/2018/07/13/why-the-fight-for-legal-abortion-is-only-half-the-battle-view

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Ireland – Court to hear legal challenges to abortion referendum result

Court to hear legal challenges to abortion referendum result
One challenger questions if some student voters at NUIG were properly registered

June 11, 2018
Mary Carolan

The president of the High Court has fixed June 26th for hearing three separate applications for permission to challenge the result of the referendum on the Eighth Amendment.

One of the challengers, Charles Byrne, who has raised concerns about whether a number of student voters at NUI Galway were properly registered, also wants copies of the marked register of voters.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/court-to-hear-legal-challenges-to-abortion-referendum-result-1.3526581

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Ireland – Three court challenges initiated to abortion referendum result

Three court challenges initiated to abortion referendum result

June 5, 2018
Mary Carolan

Three separate applications have been initiated seeking permission to bring petitions challenging the result of the referendum to repeal the Eighth amendment.

All three have been adjourned to Monday when they will come before the president of the High Court, Mr Justice Peter Kelly.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/courts/high-court/three-court-challenges-initiated-to-abortion-referendum-result-1.3520188

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The British territory with Europe’s harshest abortion laws

The British territory with Europe's harshest abortion laws

By John Owen
9 May 2018

The tiny British territory of Gibraltar has the harshest anti-abortion laws anywhere in Europe - the penalty for breaching the law is life imprisonment. But with Brexit looming and the Irish abortion referendum just weeks away, campaigners are hoping for change.

Gibraltar's residents, who live on a two-mile strip of land at the tip of Spain, are British citizens, and many feel a deep affinity with the UK.

But in one respect they are very different.

continued: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-44008790

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Fianna Fáil leader criticises ‘offensive’ anti-abortion claims

Fianna Fáil leader criticises ‘offensive’ anti-abortion claims
Micheál Martin says Eighth Amendment ‘cruelly insensitive’ to women of Ireland

May 9, 2018
Sarah Bardon

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has criticised “dishonest and offensive” campaigning by some anti-abortion groups, claiming they are deliberately spreading inaccuracies about what a Yes vote in the May 25th referendum will mean.

Mr Martin rejected the suggestion that repealing the Eighth Amendment would lead to unlimited abortions or late-term terminations.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/abortion-referendum/fianna-f%C3%A1il-leader-criticises-offensive-anti-abortion-claims-1.3489596

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Exporting Censorship: How U.S. Restrictions on Abortion Speech and Funding Violate International Law, Part 1

Exporting Censorship: How U.S. Restrictions on Abortion Speech and Funding Violate International Law, Part 1
May 7, 2018
Akila Radhakrishnan & Kristin Smith

Part 1: The Helms Amendment and Freedom of Speech

This is the first of a two-part post exploring how U.S. restrictions on abortion-related speech, activities, and funding violate U.S. human rights obligations under the ICCPR. Although much attention is rightfully paid to the devastating impact of the reimposed Global Gag Rule, the Helms and Siljander Amendments (which have been permanently in place since the 1970s) often command less consideration. These restrictions are discussed separately here in order to illustrate their unique effects on freedoms of speech and association. However, Helms, Siljander and the Global Gag Rule all fall short of the ICCPR’s requirements and therefore violate freedoms of speech and association in complex ways, as examined in more detail in the Global Justice Center’s recent brief. This post explores how the Helms and Siljander Amendments fail to meet the ICCPR’s standards for lawful restrictions on the freedom of speech. Part Two will focus on the Global Gag Rule and its violation of the freedom of association.

Continued: https://ilg2.org/2018/05/07/exporting-censorship-how-u-s-restrictions-on-abortion-speech-and-funding-violate-international-law-part-1/

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Malta – Need to reform abortion law – Nils Muižnieks

Need to reform abortion law - Nils Muižnieks

Monday, February 26, 2018
Nils Muižnieks

When I visited Malta last November, I noted how the very restrictive legislation on abortion jeopardised women’s rights. I was also particularly struck by the lack of an open debate about this issue. It is, therefore, encouraging that some voices are now starting to challenge the taboo that still surrounds discussions on abortion. To increase the chances of this debate leading to positive change for all women, it is necessary that discussions be well informed and avoid misconceptions.

Some argue that access to abortion care is not a matter of women’s human rights. Others, in Malta and elsewhere, question whether this is a human right at all.

Continued: https://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20180226/opinion/need-to-reform-abortion-law-nils-muiznieks.671761

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