Mexico Supreme Court Hears From Abortion Advocates Responding to Lawsuit

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 2, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mexico Supreme Court Hears From Abortion Advocates Responding to Lawsuit

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 2
, 2008

Mexico City, Mexico ( — The Mexico Supreme Court recently heard from abortion advocates defending the new Mexico City law legalizing abortions in a lawsuit filed by the national government and pro-life advocates. Mexico City officials argued an unborn child is not a person and can’t be granted legal rights.

The nation’s high court is considering a legal challenge to a new law in Mexico City that allows abortions up to 12 weeks into pregnancy.

The lawsuit comes from the National Human Rights Commission and the federal Attorney General’s Office, which say the new abortion law violates the Mexico Constitution.

The document offers an acknowledgement of the right to life of all people.

But Víctor Hugo Círigo, president of the Federal District Legislative Assembly’s political commission, argued otherwise at an April 25 hearing before the Supreme Court.

“The embryo cannot be classified as a person entitled to fundamental rights because neither the constitution nor secondary legislation grants it legal personhood,” he said, according to a California Catholic Daily report.

"Only persons have rights and obligations, only persons have fundamental rights," he claimed. "The embryo is not a person and, thus, cannot have fundamental rights."

The newspaper indicated the high court also heard from representatives of pro-abortion groups.

Earlier, several scientists told members of the high court that the unborn child is a human being with a distinct DNA from the moment of conception and that the baby’s heart begins to beat before many women know they’re pregnant.

Doctor Jorge Traslosheros Hernández testified before the court, according to ZENIT.

"If you decide in favor of indiscriminate abortion, you will be placing yourselves on the side of those who throughout history have held back the rights of Indians, women, black people, Jews, and now too, the embryo," he said.

The Supreme Court plans another hearing on July 25 before it will hand down the ruling.

The Mexico City abortion law has opened the door for women nationwide to get abortions even though the rest of the country continues to prohibit abortions.

Jorge Serrano Limon, leader of the National Pro-Life Committee, worries a defeat at the Supreme Court will prompt other Mexican states ruled by leftist governments, such as Guerrero and Tabasco, to legalize abortion as well.

At least one woman has already died from a legal abortion and there could be as many as eight women who have died, Limon says.