Paraguayans wear their green scarves to demand the decriminalization of abortion

About 70 women met on Saturday in a central Asunción square to claim the Decriminalization and legalization of abortion in Latin America and the Caribbean, in a country like Paraguay where the law only contemplates therapeutic abortion in scarce cases.

The event brought together university students and women who defend reproductive rights since the late 70s, all dressed in green shirts and scarves of the same color, a symbol of the fight for abortion, knotted in wrists or hair.

His message was addressed to society, to stop treating abortion as a taboo topic and open up to talk, and his demand demanded that the Government modify the current legislation, which only allows therapeutic abortion if there is a risk for the evolution of pregnancy, childbirth or if it puts the mother's life at risk.

The estimates speak of more than 30,000 annual abortions in the country and the criminalization of abortion also requires that minors, often victims of rape, have to continue with their pregnancies, with two daily deliveries of girls under 14 years.

In March of this year, an investigation by the Paraguayan Center for Population Studies (Cepep), co-financed by the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt), revealed that in 2012 32,237 induced abortions were performed.

In addition, being a practice punishable by law, the Public Ministry investigated, until November 2018, 45 cases of abortion, and currently there are three people deprived of liberty for abortion cases.

Given this situation, the Paraguayans who left today through the center of Asunción ask to leave "hypocrisy" and address abortion as a matter of public health.

Cristina Román, a member of the Women's Collective November 25, began in the feminist struggle in the late 1970s, and although she believes there is progress, she believes that "there is not much talk about abortion."

"It is quite taboo, we are still hypocrites. There are people who talk about women's rights, but the problem of unwanted pregnancy is always on the table and we have to support women and make men also become aware, that they take care. In the event that your partner becomes pregnant, take charge if you want or, if not, support him and accompany him to do his abortion, "said Roman.

This activist does not predict that the abortion law will soon arrive in her country, but recalled that, despite the ban, "there are women's organizations that provide guidance, help and indicate what services can be done."

However, these services are still being done in hiding, so one of the cries of the women who concentrated on Saturday was "Legal abortion in the hospital."

To that joined the traditional "Get the rosaries out of our ovaries", alluding to the weight of the Church in the country.

Among the youngest voices was Macarena Chilavert, lawyer and member of the feminist collective Serafina Dávalos, for whom the State does not ensure women's reproductive health.

"We seek to install in society the need to talk about this problem that takes the lives of 30,000 women a year in Paraguay," Chilavert said, although he regretted that some sectors are still reluctant and other "fundamentalists" oppose.

The young woman reported that hiding is the only way to interrupt an unwanted pregnancy in Paraguay and that makes it difficult for the intervention to be done "safely."

"We want women to be able to access, that they can decide mainly on their bodies. That is what we claim, mainly, that it can be decided, that motherhood is effectively desired, that the dignified life of women and their children can be guaranteed. and daughters, "he stressed.

The women who attended this event made a human chain on one of the sides of the square to make visible their claim to the passing cars, whose drivers also distributed the pronouncement of the day.

. (tagsToTranslate) Paraguayas (t) green (t) panuelos (t) decriminalization (t) abortion

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