Mexico Supreme Court Will Hear Lawsuit, Hundreds Get Abortions

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 29, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mexico Supreme Court Will Hear Lawsuit, Hundreds Get Abortions Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 29
, 2007

Mexico City, Mexico ( — The Mexico Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case the government and human rights groups are putting together to overturn a new law in the capital city that allows abortions up to 12 weeks into pregnancy. They say the law violates the country’s constitution, which provides legal protection for the right to life.

The court has not set a date for the hearing on the lawsuit and eight members of the bench must side with the government for the law to be declared unconstitutional.

The National Human Right’s Commission and the Attorney General Eduardo Medina Mora are working together on the case. They also say that the city’s legislative assembly does not have the authority to approve health-related measures.

More has said the Supreme Court has already sided with the government’s position in previous cases and is hopeful for a favorable ruling this time.

The legislative assembly of Mexico’s capital is controlled by pro-abortion leftist lawmakers who voted to legalize abortions. But abortion is illegal in the rest of the nation as the Mexico Congress would not likely vote for legal abortions nationwide.

The law put Mexico City on par with Cuba and Guyana and the American territory of Puerto Rico as the only places in Latin America and the Caribbean where abortions are legal.

The Democratic Revolutionary Party, whose members approved the law, called on supporters to block federal government offices later this week to protest the lawsuit.

"It’s a political maneuver to satisfy a certain public opinion over this law," Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard contended.

Meanwhile, abortions are being done at 14 city government-run health facilities and they are free to city residents and those with government-issued health insurance. So far more than 215 abortions have been done and another 292 abortion appointments have been made for the coming weeks.

In total, about 700 women have had an abortion or requested one from a government health clinic and hundreds more women have had abortions at private facilities.

Pro-life advocates are continuing their campaign to get physicians to object to doing abortions, and making it more difficult to get one. Jorge Serrano Limon of the National Pro-Life Committee told the Los Angeles Times that 94 doctors have agreed so far to abstain from being involved in abortions.

"There are very serious pressures being placed on doctors to perform abortions," he told the newspaper.

Other pro-life advocates are camped outside health clinics and are passing out literature or plastic dolls representing unborn children to persuade women not to have an abortion.