Andorra – Integrated Sexual & Reproductive Health Services for Women +++ Vanessa Mendoza Cortes’ trial on 4 December 2023



Vanessa Mendoza Cortes’ trial on 4 December 2023

Vanessa Mendoza Cortes was charged with criminal defamation after voicing concerns about Andorra’s total abortion ban at a meeting of CEDAW in 2019, during an examination of the country’s record on women’s rights.

On 1 December 2023, Amnesty International reported that: “In 2020 the public prosecutor brought three criminal defamation charges against her, but following an international outcry, two of the charges involving prison sentences were dropped. She is currently charged with ‘a crime against the prestige of the institutions’ and if convicted, she faces a fine of 6,000 euros, an additional 6,000 euros in civil damages and a six month ban from holding public office. Given the serious human rights concerns about Mendoza Cortés’ protracted prosecution, two eminent human rights experts will be attending the hearing on Monday as independent trial observers and will assess the court proceedings’ compliance with international human rights standards.”

European colleagues who spoke to people who attended the trial reported on 6 December that the prosecution did not make a good case against her.

SOURCE: Amnesty International, 1 December 2023.

For a history of abortion rights advocacy by the group Stop Violencies, which was founded by Mendoza Cortes, and what led to her trial this week, see the Campaign News archive: