Dominican Republic: Abortion Ban Endangers Health

Dominican Republic: Abortion Ban Endangers Health
Criminal Penalties Violate Rights

November 19, 2018

(Santo Domingo) – The Dominican Republic’s total ban on abortion threatens women's health and lives and violates their rights, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Abortion is illegal in the Dominican Republic in all circumstances, even when a pregnancy is life-threatening, unviable, or the result of rape.

The 78-page report, “‘It’s Your Decision, It’s Your Life’: The Total Criminalization of Abortion in the Dominican Republic,” documents that women and girls facing unwanted pregnancies have clandestine abortions, often at great risk to their health and lives. Many experience health complications from unsafe abortions, and some die. Some women and girls face abuse, neglect, or mistreatment by healthcare providers. The ban does not stop abortion but drives it underground and makes it less safe. As a starting place toward meeting the country’s human rights obligations, Congress should decriminalize abortion in three circumstances.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/11/19/dominican-republic-abortion-ban-endangers-health

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New report explores what total abortion ban means in the Dominican Republic

New report explores what total abortion ban means in the Dominican Republic

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
Mon November 19, 2018

(CNN) A woman spoke of her 16-year-old daughter who died after being denied chemotherapy for leukemia because she was in the early weeks of pregnancy. A nurse described how a woman who was experiencing heavy bleeding after self-inducing an abortion was forced by medical providers to wait for treatment as "punishment" -- only to lose too much blood to be saved. An outreach worker remembered the mentally disabled 14-year-old girl who became pregnant at 12, probably by her father, and received no care.

Stories like these are revealed in a new Human Rights Watch report, released Monday, that focuses on the effect of a total government ban on abortions in the Dominican Republic.

Continued: https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/19/health/dominican-republic-abortion-ban-report-intl/index.html

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Supreme Court of Brazil: Public Hearing on the Decriminalization of Abortion, August 3rd & 6th 2018– Antecedents, Content, Meanings

FEATURE: BRAZIL
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[1], 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.

Continued: https://mailchi.mp/safeabortionwomensright/feature-supreme-court-of-brazil-public-hearing-on-the-decriminalization-of-abortion-august-2018?e=372dd34034

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USA – Hundreds of Lawmakers and Organizations Demand State Dept. Stop Excluding Women’s Rights From Human Rights Reports

Hundreds of Lawmakers and Organizations Demand State Dept. Stop Excluding Women's Rights From Human Rights Reports
Nearly 100 civil society organizations, 129 members of Congress sent letters to Secretary of State Pompeo this week

by Andrea Germanos, staff writer, Common Dreams
Friday, October 05, 2018

Trump's State Department this week is facing backlash and calls to reverse course on its decision to omit from its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices the entire reproductive rights section and to weaken its reporting on gender-based violence—a decision critics said amounted to showing that women and girls' "rights don't matter" to the current administration.

With their eyes on preventing the upcoming 2018 reports from containing the same "highly problematic" omissions as the 2017 ones, nearly 100 civil society organizations (pdf) and 129 members of Congress (pdf) sent letters to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo demanding the inclusion of information on denials of these fundamental human rights, including lack of access to contraception, unsafe abortion, and violence in accessing healthcare services.

Continued: https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/10/05/hundreds-lawmakers-and-organizations-demand-state-dept-stop-excluding-womens-rights

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Brazil – Presidential Candidates Need to Heed Abortion Debate

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.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/09/24/presidential-candidates-need-heed-abortion-debate

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TANZANIA – Tanzania promised that everyone should have the opportunity to get a high school diploma, except if you’re a pregnant teenage girl

TANZANIA – Tanzania promised that everyone should have the opportunity to get a high school diploma, except if you’re a pregnant teenage girl

by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
Sep 19, 2018

The Citizen, a daily newspaper, reported on 10 September 2018 that, on 9 September, Tanzanian President John Magufuli urged Tanzanian women to “give up contraceptive methods” because the country needs more people. “You have cattle. You are big farmers. You can feed your children. Why then resort to birth control? This is my opinion. I see no reason to control births in Tanzania… I have travelled to Europe and elsewhere and have seen the harmful effects of birth control. Some countries are now facing declining population growth. They are short of manpower.” Yet Tanzania has a population of around 60 million people, up from 10 million at independence in 1961.

Continued: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/tanzania-tanzania-promised-that-everyone-should-have-the-opportunity-to-get-a-high-school-diploma-except-if-youre-a-pregnant-teenage-girl/

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Women’s groups drop Guatemala abortion clause over church dissent

Women’s groups drop Guatemala abortion clause over church dissent

Published on Sept 5, 2018
AFP

Women’s rights activists were forced into a hasty retreat Tuesday in the face of fierce church-led opposition to proposed legislation to loosen strict abortion laws.

Sponsors of the bill aimed at protecting underage victims of sexual abuse opted to remove a controversial clause that would decriminalize abortion for girls aged 14 or under who have been abused.

The influential Catholic and Evangelical churches organized a massive rally on Sunday to protest against the bill and in support of “life and the family.”

Continued: https://www.journalducameroun.com/en/womens-groups-drop-guatemala-abortion-clause-over-church-dissent/

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Guatemalan congress to debate contradicting abortion bills

Guatemalan congress to debate contradicting abortion bills

04 September 2018

Guatemalan legislators are to start a confusing debate on Tuesday over two bills proposing changes to the country's strict abortion laws: one looking to loosen them and the other to toughen them.

Currently, abortion is only allowed in the conservative Catholic-majority Central American country if a mother's life is in danger.

A bill sponsored by the leftist Convergencia opposition party wants to expand that to allow underage girls that have been the victims of sexual abuse to abort in the first 12 weeks.

Continued: https://www.france24.com/en/20180904-guatemalan-congress-debate-contradicting-abortion-bills

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A Woman Dies Using Parsley to Induce Abortion. Protesters Are Blaming Argentina’s Senate

A Woman Dies Using Parsley to Induce Abortion. Protesters Are Blaming Argentina's Senate
#ElSenadoEsResponsable

CARLY CASSELLA
16 AUG 2018

A 34-year-old woman has died in Argentina from trying to induce a miscarriage with parsley shortly after the nation's Senate rejected a monumental abortion bill. The news has caused angry protests from abortion rights activists, who are holding the Senate responsible for the tragic event.

Doctors say that the woman was admitted to hospital on Sunday after inserting parsley into her vagina, a common but dangerous at-home abortion treatment that stimulates blood flow in the uterus and can lead to massive internal bleeding and convulsions.

Continued: https://www.sciencealert.com/a-woman-has-died-from-self-inducing-miscarriage-after-argentina-fails-to-pass-legal-abortion

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Ipas’s Bia Galli attended Brazil’s historic Supreme Court hearing on abortion

Ipas’s Bia Galli attended Brazil’s historic Supreme Court hearing on abortion
In this Q&A, she shares why it was so important and what comes next

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

In an historic two-day hearing before Brazil’s Supreme Court last week, experts presented arguments and evidence regarding the question of whether abortion should be made legal up to 12 weeks of pregnancy. Currently abortion is a crime in Brazil—except after rape, if a woman’s life is in danger, or if the fetus has a fatal brain condition called anencephaly. As a result, thousands of women and girls each year resort to clandestine, often unsafe abortions that risk their health and lives.

Bia Galli, Ipas’s senior policy and advocacy consultant based in Brazil, attended the two-day hearing. Here she talks about its historic significance, the rise of the conservative opposition movement in Brazil, and what’s next for abortion rights advocates.

Continued: http://www.ipas.org/en/News/2018/August/Ipas-s-Bia-Galli-attended-Brazil-s-historic-Supreme-Court-hearing-on-abortion.aspx

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