Amnesty International Calls Abortion a Fundamental Human Right

by Rodney Pelletier  •  •  February 18, 2016   

Compares abortion ban to "torture"

You are not signed in as a Premium user; we rely on Premium users to support our news reporting. Sign in or Sign up today!

NEW YORK ( - In a new article, the group Amnesty International is calling abortion a human right, specifically calling El Salvador's ban on abortion "torture."

The Central American country of El Salvador has a total ban on abortion — meaning women aren't able to have abortions for any reason. Amnesty claims any women suspected of having an abortion, or doctors assisting in one, are thrown in prison.

In the case of El Salvador, Amnesty is calling for legalization in the cases of rape, incest and for the life and health of the mother. It maintains that disallowing abortion for these reasons "violates the human rights of thousands of women and girls."

The article claims there are many cases where women were mistreated and imprisoned because people assumed they had an abortion when they actually had a miscarriage.

Regarding pregnancy for rape and incest, Amnesty paraphrases the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, saying that forcing rape and incest survivors to carry out pregnancies "is tantamount to torture and other forms of ill treatment."

It claims a "climate of fear" exists among doctors since they feel obliged to report any woman they suspect may have terminated their pregnancies or they themselves may be charged with a crime.

The article never includes statistics to back up its claims, nor does it address the lack of adequate medical care, legal corruption, poverty, or the abuse of women and girls in these cases — instead suggesting access to abortion and contraception is the solution. It does, however, quote an abortion advocate saying the abortion ban is a "witch hunt against poor women."

Amnesty supports the worldwide decriminalization of abortion and contraception, transgenderism and homosexuality. Its spring campaign for 2016, called "My Body, My Rights," focuses on broadening support for abortion, contraception and homosexuality in Ireland, Tunisia and Burkina Faso.

Amnesty's previous campaign to legalize abortion in Ireland was condemned by critics for its strong anti-Catholic imagery.


Have a news tip? Submit news to our tip line.

We rely on you to support our news reporting. Please donate today.
By commenting on you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our comment posting guidelines