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Abortion activists target pro-life Dominican Republic to be the next Argentina

Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic appears to be the next country that pro-abortion activists have targeted in an attempt to make abortion acceptable and available in the country.

In the Dominican Republic, article 37 of the country’s constitution assures protection for life from “conception to death,” and abortion is not legal under any circumstance. One of the world’s most staunchly pro-life nations, the Dominican Republic’s penal code has come under fire by activists who want to decriminalize abortion, and a shift in political currents may have made their goal achievable. 

In December of 2020, Spanish newspaper El Pais reported that the country’s president, Luis Abinader, announced that both he and his political party, the Modern Revolutionary Party (PRM), support decriminalizing abortion.

Although the country’s previous president, Danilo Medina, also held this pro-abortion stance, the pro-life majority legislature blocked his efforts at changing the code. But in the most recent election, the pro-abortion PRM gained a majority in the country’s legislature. 

READ: ‘Light Blue Wave’: How the pro-life movement is spreading across Latin America

Now, as reported by the Catholic News Agency, the country’s Chamber of Deputies has opened debate about a revision to the penal code that would decriminalize abortion in three cases: for the “health of the mother,” in cases of rape, and where “severe fetal malformation” has occurred. 

In response, the country’s Catholic bishops declared that “incorporating abortion into our legislation, in any circumstance, is a flagrant constitutional violation, and a blow to the social and democratic state of law. Approving the so-called three grounds would be a serious violation of the right to life that could only be based on a wrong interpretation of the Constitution.”

Abortion activists in the Dominican Republic are employing green handkerchiefs in a manifest effort to link their pro-abortion efforts to symbolism used in Argentina. In a tweet by the pro-abortion Coalition for Women last month, abortion activists in the nation’s capital Santo Domingo were waving green handkerchiefs were pictured outside Congress pushing for decriminalization: “Handkerchief in front of ⁦@CongresoRD⁩ demanding decriminalization of #Aborto3Causales at #CódigoPenal.

The push for abortion in the Dominican Republic comes shortly after Argentina’s legislation, enacted at the end of 2020, legalizing abortion up to 14 weeks. The country succumbed to sustained efforts by abortion activists over several years, and pro-abortion groups like Planned Parenthood have proudly admitted to their involvement in helping to pass the legislation.

Abortion proponents are seizing upon this tragedy, attempting to frame it as a watershed event that will cause more pro-life Latin American countries to follow its lead in rolling back pro-life protections.

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