Women take part in a march in defense of legal abortion on International Safe Abortion Day at Paulista Avenue in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on September 28, 2023.

Why We Still Need a Day for Global Action to Decriminalize Abortion in Latin America

By Alma Beltrán y Puga

More than 30 years have passed since women gathered for the Fifth Feminist Latin American Meeting in Argentina and launched the September 28th Campaign in favor of decriminalizing abortion in the region.

The initiative, however, remains painfully relevant, as still today most countries in Central America and the Caribbean prohibit abortion even in cases of sexual violence and instances where the pregnant woman’s health (and, potentially, life) is at stake. Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and the Dominican Republic hold the most restrictive abortion laws in the region.

Change may happen soon, though, as the Interamerican Court of Human Rights (IACtHR) is set to decide an abortion case from El Salvador; the case of Beatriz, which hopefully will catalyze reform to discriminatory abortion laws.

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