In a majority first step following the appeal against her prison sentence of 8 years and national demonstrations across Argentina on 12 August, “Belén” was released from prison yesterday evening around 7pm Argentina time. Today, página12 published two hard-hitting articles about the way events are turning:
On 16 August, the Court finally ruled that “Belén”, the young woman unjustly convicted of homicide after having had a miscarriage, should be released from prison. However, 24 hours later, she had not yet been released, according to Amnesty International, who had collected 120,000 signatures on a petition calling for her release.
On 30 June, La Campaña Nacional por el Derecho al Aborto Legal, Seguro y Gratuito , a national network of organisations that has spearheaded the struggle to legalise abortion in Argentina, presented a bill for voluntary termination of pregnancy to the Argentinian Congress for the sixth time.
The UN Human Rights Committee has released a report slamming the state of abortion rights in Argentina and criticizing President Mauricio Macri’s decision to strike down key articles of the Broadcast Media Law and its subsequent effects on freedom of expression on 15 July.
They were demanding the implementation of existing legislation on when abortion is legal and the impeachment of Salta province officials who refused an abortion to the girl, who became pregnant after being raped by a group of five men and three adolescent boys. The abortion would have been legal because her pregnancy was the result of rape, her health was at risk and her mental state also permitted it, but Juana did not receive proper medical care, emergency anti-HIV prophylaxis or an abortion. Her mother filed a complaint before the Judiciary, but even then the provincial government did not allow an immediate pregnancy test nor an abortion.