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Argentina Passes Landmark Bill Legalizing Abortion

Demonstrators rejoice with inexperienced headscarves – the image of abortion rights activists.

Buenos Aires:

Argentina Wednesday turned one among solely a handful of South American nations to legalize abortion, after hours of debate within the Senate.

Hundreds of 1000’s of unlawful abortions are carried out yearly within the nation of 44 million, and pro-choice campaigners have long-urged authorities to place an finish to harmful backstreet terminations by legalizing the method.

“It becomes law,” mentioned Senate president Cristina Kirchner, after greater than twelve hours of debate.

Thousands of pro-choice activists cheered within the streets of the capital after the invoice was accredited 38 to 29, with one abstention.

It legalizes voluntary abortions at any stage as much as 14 weeks of being pregnant.

Ahead of the vote, pro-choice and anti-abortion demonstrators had gathered outdoors parliament regardless of coronavirus fears.

“This fight was born in the streets,” Silvia Saravia, a pro-choice activist, advised AFP.

The vote overturns an analogous one in 2018 which, though additionally handed the decrease home, finally foundered within the Senate by 38 votes to 31.

South America has among the most restrictive abortion legal guidelines on the earth. In Argentina, terminations had been allowed in solely two situations: rape, and hazard to the mom’s life.

“Legislate for everyone”

The invoice was proposed by President Alberto Fernandez and handed the Chamber of Deputies on December 11, regardless of fierce opposition from the Catholic Church and evangelical Christians.

“I’m Catholic but I have to legislate for everyone. Every year around 38,000 women are taken to hospital due to (clandestine) abortions and since the restoration of democracy (in 1983) more than 3,000 have died,” mentioned Fernandez.

“The interruption of a pregnancy is a tragedy. It abruptly ends another developing life,” mentioned Ines Blas, a senator from the ruling coalition.

However, Senator Silvina Garcia Larraburu, once more from the ruling coalition, mentioned she would vote for the invoice this time regardless of voting in opposition to it in 2018.


Love for all kids

Despite measures to forestall the unfold of the coronavirus pandemic, 1000’s demonstrated in entrance of parliament, following the controversy on big screens.

Pro-choice activists have campaigned for years to vary the abortion legal guidelines that date from 1921, adopting a inexperienced scarf as their image.

Anti-abortion activists had lately began sporting gentle blue scarves.

“I know that in the heart of every senator there is love for their children, their grandchildren, and above all a hope that children give us,” mentioned anti-abortion protester Karina Muzaquio.

Outside Congress, anti-abortion demonstrators raised crucifixes, prayed and arrange shows that simulated tombs, round an enormous graphic picture of a child stained with blood.

Across the plaza, pro-choice protesters held indicators that studying: “We will never go underground again.”

Earlier Wednesday Pope Francis, who’s Argentine, tweeted: “The son of God was born discarded to tell us that every person discarded is a child of God.”

While not explicitly mentioning the vote, his remark was interpreted by many as encouraging the senators to vote in opposition to the invoice.

Such adjustments have all the time been sluggish in Argentina: divorce was legalized solely in 1987, intercourse training launched in 2006, homosexual marriage accredited in 2010 and a gender identification legislation handed in 2012.

In Latin America, abortion is just authorized in Cuba, Uruguay and Guyana, in addition to Mexico City.

In El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua, it’s banned, and girls might be sentenced to jail even for having a miscarriage.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV employees and is printed from a syndicated feed.)

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