Uruguay: President Vetoes Abortion Law

Source: FSSPX News


On November 11, the Parliament of Uruguay adopted a law de-penalizing abortion during the first 12 weeks of the pregnancy in case of danger for the life of the mother or of handicap for the child, by 17 votes versus 11 out of a total of 30 votes. This law was called by the legislators the “law for the defense of the right to sexual and reproductive health.” Uruguay Socialist President Tabare Vasquez, an MD, checked the de-penalization of abortion by using his power of veto on November 13.  Indeed, shortly before taking office in 2005, he had declared that he would oppose his veto to any project aiming at de-penalizing abortion, because he did not approve of the legalization of abortion “either from a philosophical, or from a biological viewpoint.” After the presidential veto, a law can be sent back to be voted again by the senators and members of Parliament. To be adopted the law will then need to be approved by 60% (a majority of 3/5) of the senators and members of Parliament.

In a press release dated November 14, Tabare Vazquez explained that it was more important to help women to face their undesired pregnancies than to make it easier to abort. “Our laws cannot ignore the reality of the existence of a human life during pregnancy, as it is clearly proved by science.”

The Uruguayan Bishops’ Conference had rejected the legalization of abortion by announcing that whoever would vote in favor of the bill would be excommunicated. The Archbishop of Montevideo, Nicolas Cotugno Fanizzi, had called this law “a horrible crime.” (Sources: apic/kna/reuters/AP)