EL SALVADOR – Freed after 15 years in jail

 A 34-year-old woman in El Salvador has been freed after spending 15 years in jail for having a miscarriage. Maira Verónica Figueroa Marroquín was released after her 30-year sentence for aggravated homicide was commuted. Ms Figueroa always maintained her innocence. She said she suffered a stillbirth in a house where she was working as a maid in 2003. She was taken to hospital, arrested and eventually sentenced for inducing an abortion. Her parents, as well … Continued

CHILD MARRIAGE – Historic drop in numbers of child marriages globally

Girls Not Brides is a global partnership of more than 900 civil society organisations from over 95 countries. This month, they called attention to new data published by UNICEF showing a significant drop in the global number of child marriages. UNICEF estimates that globally 12 million girls marry each year before they turn 18; this is a drop from their previous estimate of 15 million per year. The number of women alive today who were … Continued

Lesotho – Seeking abortion on Facebook

In Lesotho, home to just 2.2 million people and surrounded by South Africa, abortion is strictly illegal, apart from life-threatening cases. Women face being outcast from their communities, or arrested. As a result, many are driven to using the Internet to find an abortion. Research by CNN found that on Facebook, there were dozens of different pages advertising abortions, many featuring stock images of white women popping tablets, or holding pregnant bellies. These posts offered … Continued

ARGENTINA – Macri gives a green light to open the debate on abortion law reform

In 2016, 46 women died from unsafe, illegal abortions in Argentina. All of them could have been avoided. Mauricio Macri, President of Argentina, is against abortion, but all around him there is a very strong movement and a new generation that are pushing for Argentina to become a leader in the region on abortion law reform, as they were with gay marriage. The abortion rights movement in Argentina seeks to go well beyond Chile and … Continued

CENTER FOR REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS

  Unite for Reproductive Rights is a new space where advocates from across the globe can come together to learn, engage, and collaborate on victories and challenges within the sexual and reproductive health rights movement. The website has sections for news, upcoming opportunities, and resources. The resources include case law, legislation, and reports/publications focusing on reproductive rights and the law.

SOLIDARITY REQUEST: BRAZIL – ‘We are all Rebeca!’

  ‘We are all Rebeca!’ Rebeca Mendes is a thirty-year-old Brazilian woman, divorced, with two children and a precarious job. She is also a 4th year law student, with a scholarship awarded by the federal government. In such circumstances, she also finds herself pregnant by her ex-husband, due to the failure of an inadequate health system to provide contraception. She has decided to terminate this pregnancy in order to complete her studies and focus on her … Continued

USA – Supreme Court agrees to hear appeal on “free speech” rights of so-called crisis pregnancy centres

  On 13 November 2017, the US Supreme Court agreed to hear NIFLA v. Becerra, a dispute over the meaning of free speech. The case is about a 2015 California law requiring the state’s more than 200 “crisis pregnancy centres” to notify patients whether they actually have a medical licence, and to tell all patients that California subsidises birth control and abortion services. Faith-based, anti-abortion groups, who run these centres, argue that the law violates … Continued

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