MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, August 18th 2022 - 05:38 UTC

 

 

Argentina: In the midst of presidential election activists re launch efforts to legalize abortion

Wednesday, May 29th 2019 - 09:56 UTC
Full article
Thousands of women plan to hold major demonstrations outside the Congress building in central Buenos Aires to mark the revival of their campaign Thousands of women plan to hold major demonstrations outside the Congress building in central Buenos Aires to mark the revival of their campaign
The new bill is being put forward by 15 lawmakers from a range of parties, including Macri's ruling Cambiemos coalition and left-wing opposition parties. The new bill is being put forward by 15 lawmakers from a range of parties, including Macri's ruling Cambiemos coalition and left-wing opposition parties.

Activists and lawmakers in Argentina relaunched a bid to legalize abortion on Tuesday with a new bill before Congress and a major demonstration planned, resuming a battle that has divided the homeland of Pope Francis ahead of October's general election.

Last year, a bill to decriminalize abortion up to the 14th week of pregnancy was narrowly adopted by the Chamber of Deputies but defeated in the Senate, under strong pressure from the still-powerful Catholic Church.

The new bill is being put forward by 15 lawmakers from a range of parties, including President Mauricio Macri's ruling center-right Cambiemos coalition and left-wing opposition parties.

Thousands of women plan to hold major demonstrations outside the Congress building in central Buenos Aires to mark the revival of their campaign, hoping for a better ending than they experienced last year.

Victoria Tesoriero, leader of the Campaign for the Right to Legal, Safe and Free Abortion, said activists would keep the pressure on lawmakers during the election campaign, in which a third of Senate seats and half of those in the lower house will be contested.

“Presenting the new bill is not only a return to the offensive for abortion rights, but to put pressure on the party lists to make sure that every candidate clearly states their preference,” said Tesoriero.

In raucous scenes outside Congress last August, abortion rights campaigners, wearing the green scarves that have come to symbolize their movement, wept and hugged while fireworks and shouts of joy erupted among anti-abortion activists as the Senate's defeat of the measure was announced.

“This time, the issue is already well embedded in society,” said Tesoriero. “It will be a more natural question for candidates, who will have to say what position they will take to Congress.”

In Argentina, abortion is only allowed in case of rape, a threat to the mother's life or if the fetus is deemed non-viable.

But many doctors and some provincial governments are reluctant to apply the law, recently forcing an 11-year-old rape victim to continue her pregnancy, debating the issue until the legal window for an abortion had passed.

Authorities who refused to allow the family's demand for an abortion eventually allowed a cesarean section to be carried out at 23 weeks.

The pope, a former archbishop of Buenos Aires, last year compared having an abortion to hiring a “contract killer.”

“Getting rid of a human being is like resorting to a contract killer to solve a problem,” Francis said in an address to worshippers at the Vatican in October.

Various charities estimate that 500,000 illegal, secret abortions are carried out every year in Argentina, resulting in the deaths of about 100 women.

 

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!