As the Argentina Senate considers abortion on demand, ADF International urges it to stay in line with international law and protect life and conscience.
What’s at Stake:
- The sanctity of human life
- Freedom of conscience for medical professionals
In March 2018, President Mauricio Macri asked the lower house of the Argentinian Parliament to work on a bill that would decriminalize abortion.
In Argentina, abortion is only legal when the life or health of the mother is in danger, or when the pregnancy is the result of rape. Abortion advocates pushed the government to introduce a ‘right to abortion,’ which could deny medical professionals the right to conscientiously object to participating in abortions. By a narrow margin, legislators passed a draft bill that did just that.
The bill then moved to debate in the Argentine Senate. The Senate invited ADF International and other human rights experts to comment on the proposed legislation. While proponents of the bill argued in favour of a ‘right to abortion,’ ADF International Senior Counsel Neydy Casillas drew attention to Argentina’s obligations under international law to protect life and to ensure that medical professionals have the right to conscientious objection.
After debating for 17 hours, the Senate voted the bill down.
Paul Coleman, Executive Director of ADF International, welcomed the Senate’s vote: ‘There is no “right to abortion” under international law. We applaud Argentina’s Senate for upholding the fundamental rights to life and conscience. The people of Argentina may now continue to live in a country where both lives matter – the life of the mother and the life of the child.’
Our Role in the Case
ADF International provided expert testimony on the draft bill before the Argentine Senate. The testimony focused on Argentina’s obligations to protect life and conscience under international law.