Written by Daniel Politi
A vote to legalize abortion in Argentina was balanced on a knife’s edge Tuesday because the Senate debated a invoice that will make this largely Catholic nation, homeland of Pope Francis, the most important in Latin America to take that step.
Legalization in Argentina would reverberate throughout a area the place highly effective forces oppose abortion, notably the long-dominant Roman Catholic Church and the fast-growing evangelical Protestant church buildings.
With the invoice having cleared the decrease home of Argentina’s Congress and the president vowing to signal it, all eyes had been on the Senate, the place its destiny seems to relaxation within the fingers of a handful of lawmakers who stay undecided or are retaining their positions underneath wraps.
As crowds on either side of the difficulty gathered on the plaza and streets exterior Congress, senators started debating the measure Tuesday afternoon, and the too-close-to-call vote was anticipated early Wednesday. The invoice would enable abortion on request as much as 14 weeks into being pregnant, with exceptions to the restrict in instances of rape or well being danger.
A rising and more and more vocal feminist motion in Argentina and throughout Latin America referred to as Ni Una Menos, that means not one girl much less, has coalesced across the problems with abortion and violence in opposition to ladies, and has been the driving power behind the Argentine legalization motion. Including gas to that effort have been the waning affect of the church and the election final yr of a center-left president, Alberto Fernández.
However the legalization motion nonetheless faces fierce opposition from the Roman Catholic Church and evangelical protestant church buildings. Pope Francis has spoken out in opposition to it, publicly praising a ladies’s group from impoverished neighborhoods for his or her activism in opposition to abortion.
Argentina would be a part of Uruguay, Cuba and Guyana as the one international locations in Latin America to permit abortion on request. Now, Argentina, like quite a lot of different international locations within the area, permits it in instances of rape or if being pregnant poses a danger to a lady’s well being; nonetheless different international locations have stricter limits or complete prohibitions.
Argentina’s Chamber of Deputies accredited the abortion invoice earlier this month, by a vote of 131-117.