Ecuador Court Decriminalizes Abortion in Rape Cases


Ecuador’s Constitutional Court has decriminalized abortion in cases of rape, the country’s human rights ombudsman announced, a significant step in Catholic-majority Latin America where termination of pregnancy is largely taboo.

Ombudsman Freddy Carrion announced the court’s decision on Twitter, and said the ruling “was possible thanks to the women and feminist groups who have consistently battled for a more fair and egalitarian society.”

In Ecuador, a conservative country with an 80 percent Catholic population, a woman risks up to three years in prison for having an abortion. The procedure is allowed only when a woman’s life or health is at risk or if a pregnancy is the result of the rape of a woman with a mental disability.

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