NORWAY – Prime Minister seeks to revise abortion law for political gain: demonstrations in Norway

On 30 October 2018, there were 2,000 people in a demonstration in Oslo against Prime Minister Erna Solberg, who is trying to change the abortion law so that she can gain the support of the Christian Democratic Party for a coalition government. This party is currently considering whether to go into coalition with a conservative government or a social democratic government. Emily McLean, member of Women’s Front, spoke at the rally in Bergen the same day, … Continued

ITALY – Verona city council approves anti-abortion motion; Milan city council says no

“Constitutional democracy was not born out of rights, but out of promises. It was not created containing, for example, the right to divorce, the right to terminate a pregnancy, or equal rights and obligations between spouses, and civil unions. In short, when we denounce the assault on these freedoms, we must keep in mind that these were not granted to us by constitutional democracy. Instead, it is constitutional democracy that gave us the opportunity to … Continued

ICELAND – Progressive changes proposed to the abortion law

Health Minister Svandís Svavarsdóttir has decided to submit a bill to parliament which, if approved, would allow abortion on request up to 22 weeks in Iceland, as reported by RÚV. Under current law, women are permitted to have an abortion up to the 16th week of pregnancy if there are specifically approved health reasons or for ‘social reasons’ such as if the pregnancy is the result of a rape. The existing law also allows for … Continued

ENGLAND – Women can use misoprostol at home… But national buffer zones rejected

Finally, women in England can use misoprostol at home The Department of Health and Social Care has announced that it will legalise the home use of misoprostol in England by the end of 2018 so that women are able to choose whether to use misoprostol at home rather than at a clinic. They will still have to take the mifepristone pills at the prescribing clinic first, however. The current, out-of-date system requires two visits to … Continued

NORWAY – Supreme Court judgment: case of a Catholic GP and a local municipality

In this case, a GP, who is Catholic, sued a local municipality for firing her for refusing to insert IUDs. The GP was hired in 2011. The municipality agreed when they hired her that she would not need to insert IUDs since there were a number of other GPs in her practice who she could refer women to. The Supreme Court, hearing the case, said this was not an illegal contract under the regulations valid … Continued

NORTHERN IRELAND – UK Women and Equalities Committee launches inquiry into abortion law

In Northern Ireland, unlike in Great Britain, abortion is only legal if the woman’s life is in danger or the pregnancy poses a serious, permanent or long-term risk to her health and well-being. In practice, there are almost no abortions. In 2016, a UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women inquiry on access to abortion in Northern Ireland concluded that the rights of women in Northern Ireland were being violated, and argued that … Continued

GERMANY: TWO COURT CASES

Two doctors defend right to inform patients Two gynaecologists in Germany were put on trial in August 2018 after one refused to pay a €6,000 fine for listing abortion on their website as one of the medical services offered at their practice. During the trial, a 200-300 person demonstration outside the court argued that providing information to women shouldn’t be a crime. According to Germany’s criminal code, however, anyone who publically “offers, announces [or] advertises” … Continued

28 September Reports and Articles in the Media

International Safe Abortion Day 2018 received unprecedented attention from media around the world, from countries as diverse as New Zealand, Venezuela, Ghana, Zimbabwe and Croatia. Some countries, like Ireland, India and South Africa generated more media attention than others – and it’s important to flag that since we collected reports in English, but are missing reports in other languages. This is the second year that we have collected media reports on and about the 28 … Continued

EUROPE / EPF

Restoring the Natural Order”: The religious extremists’ vision to mobilize European societies against human rights on sexuality and reproduction by Neil Datta, EPF, April 2018   This book reveals how a Christian extremist group, Agenda Europe, from the US and Europe, have been organising, fundraising and strategising since 2013 to overturn existing laws on basic human rights related to sexuality and reproduction, including to criminalise same-sex relationships, partnerships and marriages; forbid divorce; ban homosexuals from … Continued

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