Senegal: The law, trials and imprisonment for abortion

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FEATURE - Senegal: The law, trials and imprisonment for abortion
24 April 2018
International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion

by Nandini Archer, Alice Finden, Hannah Pearson
Edited by Marge Berer

Introduction

The law on abortion in Senegal is both restrictive and unclear. Although the country’s criminal code completely prohibits pregnancy termination, the Code of Medical Ethics allows an abortion if three doctors agree that the procedure is necessary to save the pregnant woman’s life. Given these circumstances, almost no abortions are legal and unsafe abortion leads to a high maternal mortality ratio. A combination of an inherited colonial penal code, and the influence of religion and social stigma, mean that despite continuing attempts by advocates to change the law, cases of sometimes prolonged pre-trial detention and imprisonment for illegal abortion and for infanticide among women unable to obtain an abortion, are rife, especially among poor and rural women.

This report looks at Senegal’s abortion law and policy, the prevalence of unsafe abortions, attempts to reform the law, the process of criminalisation of women, the extent of infanticide, and women’s stories, based on a range of published sources and valuable input from Senegalese human rights and women’s rights advocates.

Continued: https://mailchi.mp/safeabortionwomensright/feature-senegal-the-law-trials-and-imprisonment-for-abortion-24-april-2018?e=372dd34034

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El Salvador: Lawmakers must approve bill to decriminalize abortion

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El Salvador: Lawmakers must approve bill to decriminalize abortion
23 April 2018

El Salvador’s Legislative Assembly must seize the historic opportunity to decriminalize abortion before the current legislative cycle closes at the end of April, said Amnesty International today.

“Having wasted several opportunities to decriminalize abortion in recent weeks, El Salvador’s lawmakers must act now to pass this landmark reform, which would save the lives of countless women and girls,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International.

Continued: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2018/04/el-salvador-lawmakers-must-approve-bill-to-decriminalize-abortion/

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Engaging Men; A Path To Reducing Maternal Mortality Rates In Ghana

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Engaging Men; A Path To Reducing Maternal Mortality Rates In Ghana

Elikem Agbenyo
16 April 2018

Men usually shy away from participating in maternal and child related activities because they feel it is an issue that concern only women. Meanwhile men make major decisions and take actions which affect women during pregnancy or child care. Deeply immersed in these gender-related tensions are traditions, economic self-interest, and power dynamics, all of which are advantageous to men.

The Technology for Maternal and Child Health (T4MCH) Project organized a community sensitization in 33 communities to discuss socio-cultural factors that affect maternal and child health. It was revealed that, though men exude power and influence in the family and society, most men have little or no knowledge on pregnancy, delivery and child care.

Continued: https://www.modernghana.com/news/847845/engaging-men-a-path-to-reducing-maternal-mortality-rates-in.html

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Amnesty chief calls Latin America’s abortion laws violence against women

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Amnesty chief calls Latin America's abortion laws violence against women
Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s secretary general, urges Argentina and others to reform draconian legislation and says human rights have deteriorated across region

Uki Goñi in Buenos Aires
Sun 15 Apr 2018

Latin America’s draconian abortion policies have resulted in the needless deaths of thousands of women, said Amnesty International’s secretary general, Salil Shetty, as he called for a decisive push for legalization of the procedure across the region.

“The criminalization of abortion is an extreme form of violence against women. It doesn’t reduce abortions – it just makes them unsafe,” Shetty told the Guardian in Buenos Aires after a meeting with Argentina’s President Mauricio Macri.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/15/latin-america-abortion-laws-violence-against-women-amnesty-international-salil-shetty

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Ireland to vote on abortion in shadow of death

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Ireland to vote on abortion in shadow of death
Three separate medical and legal inquiries into Halappanavar’s death identified serious mistakes in her treatment at the Galway hospital

April 15, 2018
Gulf News, Mick O'Reilly, Foreign Correspondent

MADRID: The pain hasn’t gone away over these past five-and-a-half years. And there’s not a day that goes by that Andanappa Yalagi doesn’t think of his daughter, Savita Halappanavar, and how her death was so preventable.

Halappanavar died at a hospital in Galway, Ireland, in October 2012 from a septic miscarriage. Now, from his home in Karnataka, he is speaking out, hoping that Irish voters will change the anti-abortion constitutional ban that led to the death of his 31-year-old daughter.

Continued: http://gulfnews.com/news/europe/ireland-to-vote-on-abortion-in-shadow-of-death-1.2205604

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The unspeakable cruelty of El Salvador’s abortion laws

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The unspeakable cruelty of El Salvador's abortion laws
The Canadian Press
Lisa Kowalchuk, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Guelph

April 12, 2018

Around the world today we are seeing two opposite tendencies in abortion law reform.

In the Americas, the governments of Bolivia, Chile and Mexico City recently lifted total bans on abortion. Other jurisdictions such as Ohio, several states in Mexico and Poland have passed or attempted tighter restrictions.

Continued: http://nationalpost.com/pmn/news-pmn/the-unspeakable-cruelty-of-el-salvadors-abortion-laws

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El Salvador – They Were Jailed for Miscarriages. Now, Campaign Aims to End Abortion Ban.

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They Were Jailed for Miscarriages. Now, Campaign Aims to End Abortion Ban.

By ELISABETH MALKIN
APRIL 9, 2018

SAN SALVADOR — When Teodora del Carmen Vásquez walked out of the Ilopango women’s prison a few weeks ago, she embraced her parents, her teenage son — and a movement to change an anti-abortion law that stole more than a decade of her life.

In El Salvador, where a total ban on abortion leads to an immediate suspicion of women whose pregnancies do not end with a healthy baby, Ms. Vásquez was marked as a criminal after she began bleeding and suffered a stillbirth. Sentenced to 30 years for aggravated homicide, she was released only after the Supreme Court ruled that there was not enough evidence to show she had killed her baby.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/09/world/americas/el-salvador-abortion.html

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PARAGUAY – Child who was pregnant following sexual abuse dies from complications of delivery

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PARAGUAY – Child who was pregnant following sexual abuse dies from complications of delivery
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
Mar 27, 2018

The death of a 14-year-old rape victim who has died during childbirth in Paraguay has been in all the news media there. The girl had been hospitalised for 20 days, initially for a urinary tract infection, which was followed by other complications when she went into labour. Yet doctors were still attempting to deliver the baby vaginally until she suffered respiratory complications. They then attempted an emergency caesarean section, but the girl suffered an amniotic fluid embolism and three successive cardiac arrests and then she died.

The director of the National Hospital of Itauguá told local media: “It was very sudden. They attempted advanced resuscitation in intensive care, but could not save her. Her body was not ready for a pregnancy.” However, the girl’s family believe that her death was caused by medical negligence. They say the doctors insisted she give birth vaginally even though it was a high-risk pregnancy.

Continued: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/paraguay-child-who-was-pregnant-following-sexual-abuse-dies-from-complications-of-delivery/

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Vietnam – Unlicensed doctor fined for illegal abortion

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Unlicensed doctor fined for illegal abortion

Update: March 26/2018
Viet Nam News

NGHỆ AN — An unlicensed doctor in the central province of Nghệ An was fined VNĐ50 million (US$2,200) for performing an unsafe abortion that killed a local woman.

The unlicensed doctor, Đinh Thị Thanh, 52, performed the abortion by placing a catheter into the woman’s uterus and fed her boiled katuk (Sauropus androgynus) water on March 12, Vietnamnetonline newspaper reported.

Continued: http://vietnamnews.vn/society/425087/unlicensed-doctor-fined-for-illegal-abortion.html

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Abortion laws are not ‘pro life’ when they ignore women

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Abortion laws are not ‘pro life’ when they ignore women
Inhuman cases, especially in Latin America, expose the vacuity of claims that they are there for protection

Kenan Malik
Sun 25 Mar 2018

We don’t know her name. She was aged 14 and her rape had led to a pregnancy. Under Paraguay’s savage abortion laws she was denied a termination and died in childbirth. “Her body was not ready for a pregnancy,” said Hernán Martínez, director of the National Hospital of Itauguá.

In Paraguay, as in many Latin American countries, abortion is permitted only when the life of the woman is threatened (and, as this case shows, the threat to the life of a 14-year-old in childbirth doesn’t count). Three years ago, a 10-year-old girl who became pregnant after her stepfather allegedly raped her was refused an abortion.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/25/abortion-womens-rights-latin-america

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