Andorra: Acquittal of activist who raised concerns about total abortion ban at a UN meeting “an important victory”

Amnesty International
Jan 17, 2024

The acquittal of abortion rights activist, Vanessa Mendoza Cortés, on defamation charges is an important victory but she should never have been charged in the first place, said Amnesty International following a court decision today.

In a joint public statement with the Centre for Reproductive Rights, Women’s Link Worldwide and Front Line Defenders the organisations welcome today’s decision acquitting Vanessa Mendoza Cortés and remind the authorities that she should face no further intimidation or reprisals for carrying out her important and legitimate human rights work.


It’s Time to Recognize Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare Providers as Human Rights Defenders

Around the world, frontline reproductive healthcare workers are facing physical and verbal abuse, public shaming and humiliation, harassment, legal threats, death threats, sexual assault and rapes—simply for doing their jobs.

Jan 9, 2024

Around the world, frontline healthcare workers defending our right to sexual and reproductive healthcare services are under vicious attack from anti-rights actors.

In the horn of Africa, one district health official who has been providing sexual and reproductive health services for 15 years described the attacks he faces from local conservatives: “They tried to even shoot me because of the belief and the values that I had … I had provided family planning service[s] in my district. They said, ‘You are a genocider.’”


N. Ireland – Blair told Mowlam to put abortion law reform ‘on ice’ 20 years before it was legalised in North

Prime minister’s private secretary wrote that Blair ‘sees little scope for bi-communal support for a change to the law’

Seanín Graham
Thu Dec 28 2023

Twenty years before abortion was legalised in Northern Ireland, British prime minister Tony Blair ordered Northern secretary Mo Mowlam to put her planned review of the restrictive law on terminations “on ice”.

The Downing Street correspondence is contained in previously confidential files released this week in which Blair’s private secretary wrote that the “Prime Minister… sees little scope for bi-communal support for a change to the law and sees little advantage in embarking on a review.”


Indigenous women, facing tougher abortion restrictions post-Roe, want Congress to step in

Sudiksha Kochi, USA TODAY
Dec 12, 2023

April Matson was a single mother of two on a six-hour interstate quest to find a legal abortion. 

Matson loved being a parent, but the 25-year-old Native American couldn’t afford another child on her small salary as a food co-op manager. So, in 2016, Matson and a friend set out from Rapid City, South Dakota, for the long drive to Fort Collins, Colorado, for a $650 abortion. To save money, Matson spent two nights after the procedure recovering in a tent at a campsite. 


Andorra: Activist on trial for raising concerns about total abortion ban at UN meeting

December 1, 2023
Amnesty International

Abortion rights activist, Vanessa Mendoza Cortés, should have never been charged with a crime or put on trial for defending human rights, said Amnesty International, the Center for Reproductive Rights and Women’s Link ahead of her defamation trial on Monday.

Vanessa Mendoza Cortés, President of Stop Violence (Stop Violències), a civil society organisation, was charged with criminal defamation after voicing concerns about Andorra’s total abortion ban at a meeting of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) to examine the country’s record on women’s rights in 2019.


Abortion still heavily criminalized and regulated across the world, says Amnesty report

A new report by Amnesty International looks into the different forms of violence that safe abortion providers and advocates around the world are exposed to

November 25, 2023
by Peoples Health Dispatch

Health workers and activists defending access to abortion continue to face attacks, as shown in a new report by Amnesty International. While previous years have witnessed improvements in the standards of human rights, progressive legislature, and access to medication abortion, many women and girls still encounter insurmountable obstacles in seeking abortion care.

According to the report, abortion “remains criminalized and heavily regulated in most countries.” This disproportionately affects poor and working-class women, as well as those residing in remote areas where healthcare is less accessible. Regardless of whether abortion is criminalized or not, one activist interviewed for the report emphasized, “Women who have money are able to get abortion services, women without money die.”


Global: People defending abortion rights are being ‘stigmatised, abused, discriminated against, even killed’ – major new report

24 November 2023
Amnesty International

People who are defending the right to have an abortion and those who provide them, and related essential services are being stigmatised, intimidated, attacked and subjected to unjust prosecutions, making this work increasingly difficult and dangerous to carry out, said Amnesty International in a major new report today (24 November).

In the 59-page report, An Unstoppable Movement: A global call to recognise and protect those who defend the right to abortion, reveals how many healthcare workers, activists and advocates around the world face abuse, arrest, prosecution and imprisonment for supporting the right of women, girls and people who can become pregnant to access abortions.


UN experts say U.S. abortion bans violate human rights

New recommendations call on the U.S. to fully decriminalize abortion

November 17, 2023

The United States is violating human rights by denying legal access to abortion—and should take immediate action to end the criminalization of abortion at the federal, state and local levels. This is the newly released conclusion of the United Nations Human Rights Committee in response to testimony from Ipas and partners in October.

“This is a reckoning for U.S. policymakers at every level of government,” said Bethany Van Kampen Saravia, Ipas senior legal and policy advisor, who attended the October hearing in Geneva. “The UN Human Rights Committee has appropriately called on the U.S. government to acknowledge the human rights crisis that is taking place within America, as states continue to ban abortion and limit access to sexual and reproductive health care.”


El Salvador – These women say their babies were stillborn. Courts convicted them of homicide in a country with harsh abortion laws

By Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN
Sun October 8, 2023

A sign greets visitors arriving at a sun-filled two-story house in El Salvador’s capital.

“You must enter smiling,” it says. “Before you come in, you will find an invisible bag where you can leave your sorrows. When you leave, you can decide whether to take them with you.”

Teodora Vásquez knows the women seeking shelter, support or a fresh start here often have decades of sorrows weighing on them. And she’s propped up this sign beside a green plastic turtle near the front door as a first step toward the healing she hopes they’ll start to find within these walls.


Americas: Brazil can become the next country to step up to guarantee the right to abortion

Amnesty International
September 28, 2023

To mark International Safe Abortion Day on 28 September, Ana Piquer, Americas director at Amnesty International, said:

“Despite the green wave’s numerous victories in the Americas over the last few years, the rights gained and the opportunities to expand abortion protections are under attack by anti-rights actors. The overturning of Roe v. Wade in the United States last year was a wakeup call for the movement, reminding us once more that the fight to defend and expand our rights must be ongoing.”