The brutal face of hard right and fascist reaction has been on vivid display on the issues of women’s rights and the climate crisis in the past few weeks, writes Phil Hearse.
On International Women’s Day, March 8, 57 countries signed on to a United Nations’ statement calling for universal sexual and reproductive healthcare, including access to safe abortions, and comprehensive sexuality education.
Australia was not one of the signatories.
Three women were stabbed during a march to demand free, safe and legal abortions by a group of hooded people who assaulted protesters in Chile’s capital, Santiago.
About 40,000 women attended the march on July 25, carrying signs that read “the rich pay for it, the poor bleed out” and “women marching until we are free.” The march was in support of an abortion bill introduced to Congress that day by legislator Guido Girardi, from the opposition Party for Democracy.
As Ireland prepares for its referendum today, May 25, on repealing the constitutional amendment prohibiting free, safe, legal abortion, women and health workers in Rojava, the largely Kurdish area in Syria's north, have expressed their solidarity with Irish women’s right to choose.
With the exception of the Vatican state and Malta, Ireland has the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe. It exceeds Saudi Arabia and Qatar in its restrictions on women’s rights to basic reproductive health.
After a long battle, women will have the right to abortion for therapeutic reasons. Chile’s Constitutional Court announced a bill allowing abortion in such circumstances had been approved on August 21, despite pressure from conservative right-wing forces.
New laws to legalise abortions were passed by the Northern Territory parliament on March 21. The bill passed by 20 votes to four after a lengthy and emotional debate.
The new laws mean the NT joins the ACT, Victoria and Tasmania in decriminalising abortion and stands in stark contrast to NSW and Queensland, which have Australia’s most restrictive abortion legislation.
Nineteen doctors who are current or recent providers of abortion services in Queensland have signed a letter to the state premier calling for abortion decriminalisation to be resolved in the current term of parliament. This follows another delay in achieving legal reform after private member's bills were withdrawn earlier this year.
The signatories include an overwhelming majority of doctors performing abortion in Queensland.
Just two days after millions of people poured into the streets of Washington, D.C., and cities around the world for the historic Women’s March on Washington, President Trump has reinstated the controversial anti-abortion "global gag rule", which denies US funds to any international health care group involved in any activity in support of women’s rights to choose.
Poland’s ruling far-right Law and Justice party has reversed its support for a draconian abortion ban after women across the country went on strike to protest the proposed law.
Jarosław Gowin, the minister of science and higher education, said that large protests and strikes on October 3 had “caused us to think and taught us humility,” The Guardian reported.