Neo-Nazis & Religious Conservatives Unite in Slovakia’s Fresh Abortion Battle

Campaigners fear that stark legislative proposals are helping to normalise a repressive discourse around reproductive rights in which concessions may be inevitable

Sian Norris
31 July 2020

Defying the Coronavirus pandemic, women gathered on the streets of Bratislava, Liptovský Mikuláš, Banská Bystrica, and Košice in Slovakia, on 7 July, protesting the latest attack on their reproductive rights.

The women wore protective face masks and carried placards demanding that the Government not introduce restrictions to abortion law that threaten their freedom.


El Salvador – These women say they had miscarriages. Now they’re in jail for abortion.

These women say they had miscarriages. Now they're in jail for abortion.

By Kate Smith, Gilad Thaler
May 28, 2020 / CBS News

Watch the CBS News Digital documentary "Jailed for Abortion in El Salvador" in the video player above. It premieres on CBSN tonight at 10:30 p.m. ET.

Seven months pregnant, Manuela, a mother of two, said she miscarried at her modest home in rural El Salvador. But the police, and a judge, didn't believe her. They charged and convicted her for aggravated homicide, sentencing her to 30 years in prison.

But Manuela only served two of those years. In 2010, she died alone in a hospital of Hodgkin's lymphoma, a disease her lawyers say caused her to miscarry.


Poland: “This would be tantamount to a de facto ban on abortion”.

Women’s rights in Poland: "This would be tantamount to a de facto ban on abortion".

International Viewpoint Online magazine, IV544 - May 2020
Saturday 16 May 2020

A conversation with Hanna Grzeskiewicz by Carmela Negrete. This interview first appeared in German in junge Welt.

CN: The feminist collective "Dziewuchy Berlin" has warned of the precarious situation Polish women find themselves in, as the corona crisis has limited abortion access even more. What is the connection between the pandemic and abortion access?

HG: Around a thousand legal abortions take place in Poland every year. However, this option is only possible for a very limited number of cases, which is why it was common for many women to go abroad toward this end, for example, to Great Britain or Germany – while thousands of dangerous abortions that take place every year in criminalized, underground circumstances. However, now that the borders have been closed in the wake of the corona crisis, affected women have little chance to make decisions regarding their lives or bodies.


Poland creatively opposes abortion ban despite the lockdown

Poland creatively opposes abortion ban despite the lockdown

April 25th, 2020
Katarina Panić, Belgrad

Poland has been debating abortion in almost every election for decades. This time the ruling nationalist Law and Justice Party, PiS misuses the coronavirus crisis to tighten what is already one of the most restrictive laws in Europe, despite significant public opposition.

So far, abortion was only allowed in the case of foetal abnormalities, rape, incest or a risk to the mother's health. Last week Polish lawmakers tried to ban termination in the case of congenital foetal malformation, the cause of the vast majority of legal abortions in the majority Catholic country.


Abortion rights around the world

Abortion rights around the world

October 22, 2019

Abortion laws vary around the world, some countries have outright bans while others maintain highly restrictive laws.

After the liberalisation of abortion laws came into force in Northern Ireland on Monday, here is a snapshot of the global situation.


What’s Become of All the Extreme Abortion Bans From This Year?

What’s Become of All the Extreme Abortion Bans From This Year?
By Amanda Arnold
Oct 2, 2019

The first six months of the year saw relentless attacks on abortion rights on the state level. Five states passed bills banning the procedure after six weeks, before many women even realize they’re pregnant. And in May, Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed a near-full ban on the procedure. The same month, Missouri — a state with only one abortion clinic — passed an extreme eight-week ban that didn’t include any exceptions for instances of rape, incest, or human trafficking. In all, seven states have passed similarly stringent laws in 2019, and more are considering them.

But in recent months, judges in many of these states have started to issue preliminary injunctions, which allow patients to continue accessing important reproductive care while the court hears the case in full to determine whether or not the bill is constitutional. In short, these court orders — also known as temporary blocks — maintain the status quo, allowing abortion to remain legal. Most recently, on October 1, a federal judge temporarily blocked Georgia’s ban.


Explained: Abortion Rights in Mexico and Latin America

Explained: Abortion Rights in Mexico and Latin America
Here are some key facts and figures for specific countries

By Amy Guthrie
Published Sep 29, 2019

Mexican women on Saturday marched for abortion rights, highlighting increased efforts across Latin America to lift some of the world's most restrictive abortion laws.

Efforts to legalize abortion have emerged in the region as some societies become more liberal and the Roman Catholic Church loses sway amid clerical sex abuse cases. Mexico City, along with Cuba and Uruguay, are the only places in the region where women can undergo abortions during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy regardless of the circumstances.


Abortion Bans Strip People of Their Human Rights. Here’s Why We Must Stand In Solidarity Against Them

Abortion Bans Strip People of Their Human Rights. Here's Why We Must Stand In Solidarity Against Them

By Uma Mishra-Newbery and Jaime Todd-Gher
September 27, 2019

Banning abortions isn’t particularly effective. When governments restrict access to abortion, abortions actually continue to take place at roughly the same rate, according to the World Health Organization. But they get less safe. When abortion services are denied or limited, coat hangers, toxic herbal medicines and unqualified practitioners step into the breach, while medical professionals who provide proper care are criminalized.

Total bans or restrictive abortion laws in countries like El Salvador, Poland and more recently several U.S. states (including Louisiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama and Missouri) are designed to control and confine women and girls to stereotypical gender roles. They are an affront to their human rights and dignity and constitute gender discrimination. For transgender and queer people who need abortions, such restrictive laws are the latest in a long line of attacks on their rights and freedoms.


After Abortion Ban Attempt in Alabama, a Flood of Confusion and Phone Calls

After Abortion Ban Attempt in Alabama, a Flood of Confusion and Phone Calls

August 27, 2019
by Catherine Trautwein

Pro-choice demonstrators protest outside the state capitol during the March For Reproductive Freedom in Montgomery, Alabama May 19, 2019. (Seth Herald/AFP)

Almost daily, the Reproductive Health Services clinic in Montgomery, Alabama, receives several versions of the same call: “Are y’all still doing abortions? Have they outlawed it in Alabama? Where can I go?”

The confusion is understandable. In May, Gov. Kay Ivey signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act, which aimed to outlaw abortions in all cases except when the mother’s life was at risk. The passage of the strictest anti-abortion measure in the country made national news.


USA – Why anti-abortion groups are backing away from abortion bans

Why anti-abortion groups are backing away from abortion bans
Debate around a Tennessee bill shows a big shift in anti-abortion strategy.

By Anna North
Aug 22, 2019

When legislators in Tennessee debated a bill earlier this month that would ban abortion as soon as a pregnancy can be detected, opposition came from a surprising place: anti-abortion groups.

Though the groups National Right to Life and Tennessee Right to Life oppose abortion, they also oppose the Tennessee ban, because they believe it would never stand up in court. If such a ban were to make it to the Supreme Court, the groups worry it would fail: “There is no objective evidence that we have more than one vote to overturn Roe v. Wade,” said James Bopp, general counsel of the National Right to Life Committee, which describes itself as “the nation’s oldest and largest pro-life organization,” in testimony against the bill.