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Argentina: New bill to legalise abortion must be passed by congress

Responding to reports that newly-inaugurated Argentinian President Alberto Fernandez will introduce a bill within 10 days to legalise abortion, Mariela Belski, Executive Director of Amnesty International Argentina, said: 

“Congress must now listen to the demands of tens of thousands of women who have fought to have control over what they do with their bodies. 

“Access to safe abortion is a human right. Yet in Argentina abortion continues to be illegal, and is only available to women whose life or health is in danger, or where the pregnancy is the result of rape. 

“Legalising abortion would be a truly historic step for our country, and women would be able to look forward to a future where their rights are respected and they are treated with compassion.” 

In August 2018, an historic vote to legalise abortion in Argentina fell in the senate. Women’s rights advocates, including Amnesty International, vowed to fight on against what they called a ‘temporary setback’. Tens of thousands of women took to the streets to protest in favour of legal abortion, determined to keep up the pressure on the government. 

Earlier this year, elected president of Argentina, Alberto Fernández, announced that he would push the legalization of abortion as soon as he took office on 10th December 2019. He said: “It is a public health issue that we must solve.” 

The debate over decriminalisation and legalisation of abortion in Argentina has placed abortion firmly on the nation’s public agenda, and younger generations have become vocal in their fight for change on the issue.   

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