Tag Archives: abortion

Special Rapporteur calls on States across the world to repeal restrictive abortion laws

September 29, 2016 – Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez and other independent United Nations Human Rights experts called on States across the world to repeal restrictive #abortion laws and policies, as well as all punitive measures and discriminatory barriers to access safe reproductive health services.

The experts explained that in the twenty-first century unsafe abortion is one of the leading causes of maternal mortality and morbidity. According to the World Health Organization, about 22 million unsafe abortions take place each year worldwide and an estimated 47,000 women die annually from complications resulting from the resort to unsafe practices for termination of pregnancy,” they continued.

“Criminalisation of abortion and failure to provide adequate access to services for termination of an unwanted pregnancy are forms of discrimination based on sex. Restrictive legislation which denies access to safe abortion is one of most damaging ways of instrumentalising women’s bodies and a grave violation of women’s human rights. The consequences for women are severe, with women sometimes paying with their lives,” the experts stated.

“We cannot tolerate the severe violation of women’s human rights on the basis of their sex and biological differences. We cannot tolerate the high incidence of women’s and girls’ preventable deaths resulting from maternity-related issues, including from unsafe abortion,” they concluded. #sept28

Read the full message here

UN and African Experts Urge Sierra Leone’s president to save millions of women’s lives by signing the 2015 safe abortion bill

January 28, 2016 – Today, Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez, together with other United Nations and African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights human rights experts, urged the President of Sierra Leone to sign the 2015 Safe Abortion Bill so that it may enter into force without further delay. “Sierra Leone has a great opportunity to save hundreds of women’s and adolescents’ lives by adopting the bill,” the experts stated. “This bill is a cornerstone legislation to advance women’s and adolescents’ right to health, including sexual and reproductive rights in a country where maternal mortality rates are one of the highest in the world,” they concluded.  To read the full article, visit the OHCHR website here.