Fiji Police Investigate Second Death of Woman From Botched Legal Abortion

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 21, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Fiji Police Investigate Second Death of Woman From Botched Legal Abortion Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
February 21
, 2008

Suva, Fiji ( — Police in Fiji are investigating the second death of a woman from a botched legal abortion there after the former Fiji Medical Association president was found guilty of killing a woman in a March 2003 abortion. The new case involves a 28-year-old Lautoka housewife who appeared to die following complications from the abortion.

Abortions are allowed in rare cases in Fiji such as rape, incest, saving the mother’s life or when approved on socioeconomic grounds.

Foreign abortion advocates have been trying to get the Pacific island nation to legalize abortions for any reason.

According to the Fiji Times, police superintendent Emori Laqai said the woman died after relatives took her to a hospital on Tuesday night. Following her death, the relatives told hospital officials the woman had an abortion on Monday.

Laqai told the newspaper that a doctor in Lautoka reportedly did the abortion and that police were waiting on a port-mortem report to determine the cause of death.

Officials say the doctor who did the abortion is a prominent physician but did not disclose his name to Fiji media.

This is the second woman to die from a legal abortion after former Fiji Medical Association president Sachidar Nand Mudaliar killed a 20 year-old student five years ago.

Mudaliar was found guilty in the death of student Poonam Kumar after he left her overnight at his office following her death.