El Salvador abortion law change would compound injustice

El Salvador already has some of the most draconian anti-abortion laws in the world, but they could become even stricter if Congress adopts an opposition proposal to imprison women for up to 50 years if they terminate a pregnancy. The Nationalist Republican Alliance (Arena) has submitted a motion to reform article 133 of the penal code, which stipulates the penalty for women who cause or consent to an abortion. Read more.

On 26 July 2016, we sent a letter formulated by the GWI to El Salvador’s minister of foreign affairs Hugo Martinez. In the letter, the FFGW stated as follows:

”Finnish Federation of Graduate Women (FFGW) wishes to express deep concern at the unjustified severity of the penalties proposed in the motion submitted by the Nationalist Republican Alliance (Arena) to reform article 133 of the penal code. This represents a complete imbalance of justice: responsibility is a joint issue for men and women.

The FFGW calls on the parliament of El Salvador to observe the country’s commitment to eliminating discrimination against women as in Article 1 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) ratified by El Salvador on 19 August 1981.

The FFGW therefore urges the government of El Salvador not to proceed with punitive measures, but rather to implement and strengthen compulsory education programmes, which include sexual health education in order to change social attitudes and provide girls and women with multiple opportunities throughout their life cycle, including access to education up to the highest levels. ”