Brazilian doctors condemn new rules on abortion

Lise Alves, The Lancet
WORLD REPORT| VOLUME 396, ISSUE 10254, P808, SEPTEMBER 19, 2020
https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31956-5

Experts say that the new rules for health workers will discourage access to health services and increase the risk of unsafe abortion. Lise Alves reports from São Paulo.

An ordinance passed by Brazil's Health Ministry at the end of August, 2020, related to abortion has led to widespread criticism by doctors. Under the new rules, medical staff must report rapes to police and health workers must offer the patient a chance to see the embryo or fetus via ultrasound before abortion.

Continued: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)31956-5/fulltext


The case of the girl from Espírito Santo: Is this a new turning point in the long journey for abortion rights in Brazil?

11 Sep 2020
by Sonia Corrêa

Since 1940, Brazilian law has permitted abortion in cases of rape,  and sexual intercourse with persons under 14 years old is automatically  defined as rape. In 1999, the Brazilian Ministry of Health’s issued the Technical Protocol orienting Care for Victims of Sexual Violence (MoH Protocol),  considered by WHO as a main  global reference for sexual and reproductive health policies. Though revised in 2005 and 2012, its content has not been substantially altered.

On August
8th, 2020, the Brazilian press reported the case of a 10-year-old girl who
became pregnant after being raped by her uncle, who lived with her, and her
grandmother in the municipality of São Mateus, state of Espírito Santo
(neighboring Rio de Janeiro). After suffering from abdominal pains,  the
girl was taken to a local hospital. She told the medical team that she had been
abused since she was 6 years old.

Continued: https://sxpolitics.org/the-case-of-the-girl-from-espirito-santo-is-this-a-new-turning-point-in-the-long-journey-for-abortion-rights-in-brazil/21576


Activists in Latin America battle to guarantee access to safe abortion in COVID-19 world

By Josefina Salomón & Christopher Alford
7 September 2020

For decades, women human rights defenders across Latin America have been fighting an uphill battle to ensure sexual and reproductive rights, including access to safe abortion, are a reality for all. Over the last five months that battle has turned into a war.

The figures have been shocking for a long time. The COVID-19 pandemic has turned them into a catastrophe, with a potential bleak future.

Continued: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2020/09/activists-latin-america-access-safe-abortion-covid19/


Cuban Soap Opera Fuels Abortion Debate

Anti-abortion posts triggered by a fictional story on TV are stirring up controversy on social media, where opinions in favor of this right Cuban women possess dominate.

September 7, 2020
By IPS-Cuba

HAVANA TIMES – There is a heated debate about legal abortions going on in Cuba today, with hundreds of comments from activists, experts and citizens taking over social media, because of one of the storylines in Cuban soap opera “El rostro de los dias”.

As a result of the sexual abuse Lia (the teenage character in this show) suffers, controversy stirred on social media. Raped by her stepfather the question is whether the girl should keep the baby or not. Heated exchanges about legal abortion in Cuba have unfolded because of conservative posts about the issue.

Continued: https://havanatimes.org/features/cuban-soap-opera-fuels-abortion-debate/


Brazil abortion debate: Gov’t imposes new rules for rape victims

Why a 10-year-old child has reignited the debate on abortion in Brazil.
(3 minute video)

by Monica Yanakiew
1 Sep 2020

Brazil has imposed new rules for rape victims seeking an abortion, requiring them to look at the fetus before the procedure.

Doctors are also obligated to report their cases to the police.

This comes two weeks after anti-abortion rights activists surrounded a hospital to stop a 10-year-old girl from terminating her pregnancy.

Al Jazeera's Monica Yanakiew reports from Rio de Janeiro.

Continued: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/09/brazil-abortion-debate-govt-imposes-rules-rape-victims-200901160743666.html


Abortion for 10-year-old rape victim sparks near-riot in Brazil

A near-riot in front of a hospital in the northeastern town of Recife in mid-August sent shock waves across Brazil. Inside, a 10-year-old rape victim was having an abortion.

Aug 31 , 2020, ASSOCIATED PRESS

Conservative religious groups and right-wing politicians connected to the more radical evangelical churches gathered in front of the hospital and attempted to break in to stop the abortion.

The case of Menina (Portuguese for "girl") as she became known because her identity cannot be disclosed, came to light after the Minister for Women, Family and Human Rights, Damares Alves, herself a pastor of a Pentecostal church, sent representatives to meet with the girl's family trying to convince her to keep the baby.

Continued: https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/world/abortion-10-year-old-rape-victim-sparks-near-riot-in-brazil


Brazil expands requirements for abortion in rape cases

AFP, Rio de Janeiro
AUG 29 2020

Brazil expanded its requirements Friday for rape victims seeking an abortion, including a rule that medical staff must tell the woman she can see the embryo or fetus via ultrasound.

The new regulations published by far-right President Jair Bolsonaro's health ministry also stipulate that the rape "must be reported to police" regardless of the woman's wishes, that she must give doctors "a detailed account" of what happened, and that she must be "expressly warned" she can be prosecuted for fraud and aborting illegally if she is unable to prove her claim.

Continued: https://www.deccanherald.com/international/brazil-expands-requirements-for-abortion-in-rape-cases-879458.html


Religious zealots only show why abortion should be legal

By Suzanne McLaughlin
22nd August

LAST week a 10-year-old Brazilian girl wearing a little flowery dress and cheap
flip-flops was bundled into a car boot clutching her fluffy toy frog. She was
driven through a back door to a hospital guarded by military police past a
throng of right-wing and religious extremists in order to have a termination.

Abortion is allowed in Brazil in just three instances: to save a woman’s life,
if it is the result of rape and if the child is dead. This little girl was
living through two of these circumstances. She was a victim of rape and her
life was in imminent danger and so the judge in her home area ruled that the
abortion should go ahead.

Continued: https://www.thenational.scot/news/18669689.suzanne-mclaughlin-religious-zealots-show-abortion-legal/


A 10-Year-Old Girl’s Ordeal to Have a Legal Abortion in Brazil

August 20, 2020
Delphine Starr, Coordinator, Children's Rights Division
Human Rights Watch

Earlier this month, a 10-year-old-girl in Espírito Santo State, Brazil, discovered she was pregnant after 4 years of repeated rape by her uncle, who threatened her to keep quiet. The girl, who lives with her extended family, wanted to end the pregnancy, which could have endangered her life at such a young age. Under Brazilian law, which allows abortions in cases of rape and when it is necessary to save the pregnant person’s life, she had the right to do so. However, the hospital where she was admitted refused to perform the abortion, alleging it did not have the authority to conduct the procedure. Following a judge’s intervention and a 900-mile journey to receive care, the girl finally had the abortion on August 17.

But her ordeal didn’t end there.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/08/20/10-year-old-girls-ordeal-have-legal-abortion-brazil


Brazil: outcry as religious extremists harass child seeking abortion

Ten-year-old girl was forced to fly more than 900 miles to north-eastern city of Recife for the procedure after being raped

Tom Phillips and Caio Barretto Briso in Rio de Janeiro
Mon 17 Aug 2020

Scores of Brazilian women have taken to the streets to protect a 10-year-old child who was being persecuted by religious extremists for trying to legally undergo an abortion after being raped, allegedly by her uncle.

The girl, from São Mateus, a small town in the south-eastern state of Espírito Santo, was admitted to hospital on 7 August complaining of abdominal pain and doctors confirmed she was pregnant.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/aug/17/brazil-protest-abortion-recife-hospital