Amnesty International Canada recently reshared this really upsetting video about “Claudia,” one of the 17 women imprisoned in El Salvador for pregnancy related issues.
El Salvador has extremely strict laws against abortion, so much so, says Amnesty, that women are sometimes prosecuted and convicted for “murder” after having experienced natural late-term miscarriages:
Prejudice, unsafe evidence, and lack of effective legal defence are some of the common denominators of their flawed prosecutions and trials, the product of a hostile environment against women’s sexual and reproductive rights. In many cases, they were initially charged with abortion and subsequently with aggravated murder, which carries much longer prison terms.
The petition to pardon Guadalupe, filed in April by the Citizenship Group for the Decriminalization of Abortion, highlighted due process and fair trial concerns. Among others, the fact that the forensic examination after the miscarriage concluded that the cause of death was “undetermined”, and that there was no evidence of her having provoked its death – this alone would make the conviction unfair.
In addition, when she was taken to a public hospital after the miscarriage, hospital staff reported her to the police who questioned her without a lawyer while she was still receiving medical care. She was not assessed by a psychologist at the time, so it was not possible for the judge to evaluate her state of mind during this interrogation.
Amnesty International is calling on the authorities to immediately and unconditionally release all women and girls who have been imprisoned for having abortions or miscarriages.
This video has been on AI Canada’s YouTube channel since November. If you know who deserves credit for the work, please add info in the comments below.