El Salvador Frees Woman Imprisoned Under Anti-Abortion Laws


El Salvador Frees Woman Imprisoned Under Anti-Abortion Laws

Feb. 15, 2018

SAN SALVADOR (Reuters) - An El Salvadoran woman, serving a 30-year prison term for allegedly aborting her child, was freed on Thursday after the country's Supreme Court reduced her sentence.

Since 1997, El Salvador has had one of the world's most severe laws against women who have had abortions or those who are suspected of assisting others with abortions.

Prosecutors maintain that Teodora Vasquez, a 34-year-old chef, strangled her baby after it was born in 2007. Her lawyers said she had health complications and had suffered a stillbirth.

Continued: https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2018-02-15/el-salvador-frees-woman-imprisoned-under-anti-abortion-laws

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Isle of Man: Roman Catholic leader: ‘Every abortion is an act of desperation’


Roman Catholic leader: 'Every abortion is an act of desperation'

Thursday, 15 February 2018
by Sam Turton

The leader of Roman Catholics in the Isle of Man has spoken out about the proposal to reform abortion laws in the Isle of Man.

Reverend Monsignor John Devine, Dean of the Catholic Church in the Isle of Man, has written to the Chief Minister about his views.

His letter distances himself and the church from the more militant stances taken by some objectors, who used graphic images on placards in their demonstrations against reform.

Continued: http://www.iomtoday.co.im/article.cfm?id=38606&headline=Roman%20Catholic%20leader:%20%27Every%20abortion%20is%20an%20act%20of%20desperation%27&sectionIs=news&searchyear=2018

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‘Quacks are killing our women’: Nigeria’s abortion ban pushes women to drastic measures


'Quacks are killing our women': Nigeria's abortion ban pushes women to drastic measures
By Declan Cooley

Posted Fri Feb 9, 2018

Blessing grew up in a dusty but bustling city in Nigeria's forgotten east, but while she was at school and in love with her boyfriend, she fell pregnant.

Somehow Blessing's mother, and the rest of her neighbourhood, found out she was pregnant and tried to insist she marry her boyfriend and keep the baby.

"Knowing full well I couldn't keep the child I took the risk myself to have an abortion on my own," she says.

Continued: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-02-10/nigerias-abortion-ban-pushes-women-to-drastic-measures/9416164

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USA: Coercion Is at the Heart of Social Conservatives’ Reproductive Health Agenda


Coercion Is at the Heart of Social Conservatives’ Reproductive Health Agenda
Joerg Dreweke, Guttmacher Institute
First published online: February 7, 2018


Coercive intent and practices are at the core of social conservatives’ reproductive health agenda, including virtually every reproductive health–related initiative from the Trump administration and social conservatives in Congress over the past year.
Coercion can take many forms, including withholding information, obstructing access to health services or providers, attempting to ban services outright and empowering third parties to impose their views on others.
Such coercive measures particularly target people who are in vulnerable positions, for instance because of their immigration status, youth or lack of financial resources.

Continued: https://www.guttmacher.org/gpr/2018/02/coercion-heart-social-conservatives-reproductive-health-agenda

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Ireland: Abortion on request will follow shortly after repeal of amendment


Abortion on request will follow shortly after repeal of amendment
It’s hard to see how anyone can really believe 12 weeks is line in sand

Feb 6, 2018
Fr Chris Hayden

What will happen after the referendum on the Eighth Amendment? Will the issue be parcelled neatly away, so that those who see the result as a victory can rest easy, and those who see it as a defeat can arrive at a sad acceptance of the way things are? Far from it.

This is one issue that is not going away, irrespective of the outcome of the eventual referendum. Anyone who votes in the hope of finally laying the matter to rest will be disappointed.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/abortion-on-request-will-follow-shortly-after-repeal-of-amendment-1.3380859

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Ireland divided as vote on abortion tests faith and the old order


Ireland divided as vote on abortion tests faith and the old order
In the only Irish county to vote against same-sex marriage, a close vote is expected in May

Kevin McKenna
Sat 3 Feb 2018

The eighth amendment of the Irish constitution makes Ireland, depending on your point of view, either a unique beacon of humanity in a godless world or a superstitious hamlet determined not to enter into the 21st century. The amendment was signed into law in October 1983 after two-thirds of the electorate voted in a referendum to accord equal status to the life of a child growing in the womb with that of its mother. As a result, only in extreme circumstances can an abortion take place.

Pointing out that no one under the age of 52 had ever voted on the issue, the taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, last week announced that a referendum would take place by the end of May to repeal the amendment.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/03/ireland-abortion-referendum-divided-vote-faith-old-order

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Ireland: Ann Lovett 1968 – January 31 1984


Ann Lovett 1968 – January 31 1984
By Donal O'Keeffe
January 31, 2018

34 years ago today, Ann Lovett died after giving birth at a grotto in Granard. Ann’s death changed an Ireland which is still trying to escape the long shadow of the 1980s, writes Donal O’Keeffe.

Granard, Co Longford, is a very picturesque town. It dates back at least to Celtic times and is mentioned in the Táin Bó Cuailgne. Queen Medb and her army stopped in Granard, on their way to take the brown bull of Cooley. So ancient a place is Granard that the original meaning of its name is unclear in Irish. It’s said St Patrick appointed the son of his former master the first bishop of Granard.

Granard is dominated – literally – by the Catholic Church. As you enter from the Edgeworthstown side, you’re immediately aware of the hill looming up on your left, and the grey St Mary’s Church which overlooks the entire main street. At the top of the hill, above the church, is a statue of St Patrick. Below that statue, behind the church, is a Marian shrine. The concreted ground is slick with moss, as a stone Saint Bernadette gazes up with unliving eyes at the statue immortalised by Paula Meehan in her poem ‘The Statue of the Virgin at Granard Speaks‘.

Continued: https://avondhupress.ie/ann-lovett-1968-january-31-1984/

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Ireland: Nuance and abortion: Churches, other faiths, and atheists differ


Nuance and abortion: Churches, other faiths, and atheists differ
All churches and faiths abhor abortion but most agree it can be the lesser evil

Patsy McGarry
Mon, Jan 29, 2018

It is highly unlikely Ireland’s Catholic and Protestant churches or its other faiths will take an active part in political campaigning leading up to the abortion referendum later this year.

They tend to avoid such campaigning in the main, apart from some individual clergy.

However, they will articulate their views in sermons or when asked by media, including being invited to take part in debates, and through their own leaflets, online and in other relevant publications.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/religion-and-beliefs/nuance-and-abortion-churches-other-faiths-and-atheists-differ-1.3371629?mode=amp

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Clergy gather to bless one of the only U.S. clinics performing late-term abortions


Clergy gather to bless one of the only U.S. clinics performing late-term abortions
By Julie Zauzmer
January 29, 2018

When clergy gather at an abortion clinic, it’s usually in protest, outside the building.

Rarely are they huddled inside the clinic, not to condemn but to bless the procedures that happen there.

Yet that was the Rev. Carlton Veazey’s task as he led a prayer in Bethesda on Monday. “God of grace and God of glory, in whom we move and live,” he said, as he opened a prayer for the well-being of the doctor and nurses who facilitate abortions at a clinic here and for their patients. “Keep them safe and keep them strong. And may they always know that all that they do is for Thy glory.”

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2018/01/29/clergy-gather-to-bless-an-abortion-clinic-which-provides-rare-late-term-abortions-in-bethesda/?utm_term=.71ca310a28a6

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Therapeutic abortion: a Costa Rican right ensnared in doubts and fears


Therapeutic abortion: a Costa Rican right ensnared in doubts and fears

Paula Umaña
January 25, 2018

On Nov. 29, 2017, journalism student Paula Umaña published an in-depth feature for the weekly Semanario Universidad as part of Punto y Aparte, a mentoring program for young journalists. The Tico Times is proud to translate and publish her original piece with Semanario Universidad about therapeutic abortion in Costa Rica. Part I of III.

Because of lack of knowledge and fear of legal consequences, health care professionals contribute to the obstacles to therapeutic abortion in Costa Rica.

At 24, Lucía is in her last year of medicine at one of the country’s universities. When asked about therapeutic abortion, she says she remembers seeing it mentioned in one class and says “that it’s prohibited in Costa Rica”.

Continued: http://www.ticotimes.net/2018/01/25/therapeutic-abortion-a-costa-rican-right-ensnared-in-doubts-and-fears

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