ASEAN Underground Abortion
6 July 2020
Abortion is an extremely taboo topic in some parts of conservative Southeast
ASEAN member states such as the Philippines and Lao do not permit abortion.
Whereas Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand only allow abortion if a medical
practitioner deems that continuing the pregnancy poses a danger to the mother’s
life and health.
Abortion still 'used as contraceptive' in Vietnam
Experts warn that in Vietnam, the lack of sex education means young people don't know enough about safe sex and some are relying on abortion as a form of birth control.
8 Jun 2020
No one had ever talked to her about sex: not her parents, not her teachers -- and her friends knew as little as she did.
"I was terrified when I found out I was pregnant...I think if we had been told about safe sex, we would not have fallen into this trap," the 20-year-old explains.
Rwanda to release 50 women jailed for having abortions
Activists welcome pardons, but call for relaxation of abortion laws and an end to punitive measures such as life sentences
Christophe Hitayezu in Kigali
Published on Thu 21 May 2020
Rwanda is to release 50 women who were jailed for having abortions after a personal pardon was issued by the country’s president, Paul Kagame.
Human rights activists welcomed the pending release of the women, six of whom had been given life sentences – the highest penalty available to the courts – two serving 25 years and the others terms ranging from 12 months to 20 years.
Protesting Poles engage in drive for abortion rights
Joanna Plucinska, Reuters
April 14, 2020
WARSAW — Poles took to social media and their cars on Tuesday to oppose proposals set to be discussed in parliament this week to limit abortion rights and to criminalize sex education in conservative Poland.
As restrictions on movement to contain the novel coronavirus prevented street gatherings, protesters driving in their cars blocked off one of Warsaw’s main roundabouts, Rondo Dmowskiego.
Poland: Reject New Curbs on Abortion, Sex Ed
Don’t Manipulate Pandemic to Endanger Women, Adolescents
April 14, 2020
Human Rights Watch
(London) – Poland’s Parliament will consider regressive legislation this week that would restrict sexual and reproductive health and rights and put the lives and well-being of women and adolescents at risk, Human Rights Watch said today. The legislation is scheduled for reading on April 15 or 16, 2020 as the country remains under a COVID-19-related state of emergency that bans group gatherings.
The bills under consideration were originally introduced in March 2018 and October 2019, and have since been stalled or not moved forward under the Parliament elected in November 2019. Both were met by street protests.
Amid COVID-19 pandemic, a landmark week for abortion care access in Northern Ireland
April 11, 2020
Belfast — After a chaotic week that saw outcry from pro-choice campaigners and abortion providers on both sides of the Irish Sea, Northern Ireland moved to ensure abortion services will be available during the pandemic. In a statement issued to the media on Thursday, April 9, the region’s Department of Health said medical professionals were now permitted to “terminate pregnancies lawfully.” The statement also claimed that the rollout of abortion services, which were meant to have been legally available beginning March 31, had been impacted by the pandemic and “the urgent need to focus resources on preparing the health and social care system for the surge in cases.”
The government’s decision comes after a tumultuous two weeks in which abortion services were supposed to be operational yet remained inaccessible through Northern Ireland’s health service.
England Leads Way in UK after U-Turn on COVID-19 Abortion Access
Rest of UK, Europe Should Follow
March 31, 2020
Hillary Margolis, Senior Researcher, Women's Rights Division
The UK’s Department of Health and Social Care has confirmed it will allow women in England temporarily to manage medical abortions at home in light of the lockdown imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Health authorities in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales – and governments across Europe – should swiftly follow suit.
The welcome decision follows outrage and confusion last week after the government announced the change only to reverse it hours later.
Colombia: Uphold Women’s Rights in Abortion Case
Human Rights Watch Submits Brief to Constitutional Court
Jan 31, 2020
(Washington, DC) – Colombia’s Constitutional Court should uphold women’s rights in deciding a case regarding access to abortion, Human Rights Watch today. Human Rights Watch submitted an amicus brief in the case to the court on January 30, 2020.
In 2006, the Constitutional Court issued a landmark ruling that decriminalized abortion when the life or health of the pregnant woman is at risk, when the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest, and when the fetus has a serious condition incompatible with life outside the womb. But today, access to legal abortion still faces many barriers. The case currently pending before the court seeks to prohibit abortion altogether.
Slovakia rejects bill requiring ultrasound before abortion
Lawmakers in Slovakia have rejected a proposed bill that would have made it obligatory for women seeking abortions to first have an ultrasound and obtain the consent of the father before having the procedure
By The Associated Press
5 December 2019
Lawmakers in Slovakia have rejected a proposed bill that would have made it obligatory for women seeking abortions to first have an ultrasound and obtain the consent of the father before having the procedure.
The bill was submitted by three members of the conservative Slovak National Party. In its initial draft, the bill made it mandatory for women to listen to the fetal heartbeat where possible. After being debated earlier this week, the bill was rejected on Thursday.
Last month, more than 30 organizations, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, wrote to Slovak parliamentarians expressing their “deep concern” about the proposed law. They warned that if the legislation was adopted, Slovakia would be the only European Union country to impose such requirements on women in countries with legalized abortion.
Slovakia may force women to get pre-abortion ultrasound
By MARIA CHENG, AP Medical Writer
Nov. 29, 2019
LONDON (AP) — Lawmakers in Slovakia are scheduled to debate a proposed law Friday that would compel women seeking an abortion to first have an ultrasound and listen to the heartbeat of the embryo or fetus, a move many groups have decried as a backward step for women’s rights.
The bill was submitted by three members of the conservative Slovak National Party, who wrote that it is intended “to ensure that women are informed about the current stage of their pregnancy” before having an abortion.