Guatemala: The ship that sparked controversy

By Alba Trejo

Guatemala, March (SEMlac). - A ship of the international pro-abortion NGO Women on Waves sparked controversy at the port of San José when it urged women up to 10 weeks pregnant to have abortion procedures performed on board if they so wished. 
Local MPs, religious leaders and government authorities, including president Jimmy Morales, strongly opposed such an "aberration."
The treatment offered by Women on Waves consisted of two abortive bills and advisory services on board.
A report of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) indicated that a child gestated after rape is born every day in Guatemala and that around 65,000 women resort to illegal abortion every year.
Sixty per cent of the 17-million population is Catholic and goes to mass every Sunday.
There were 6,729 visits and 2,000 comments on Facebook alone, while the press release entitled Local authorities have expelled an abortion ship one day after arrival was read by 3,213 people and commented on by another 443.
Ana S. Monzón, a feminist activist, indicated that three centuries of women's struggles and demands were simply erased in one fell swoop.
Carolina Vásquez emphasized that women's rights have on this occasion been trampled upon, without taking any notice of the consequences.
"Those who protested against the ship will not look after the babies, so they should not interfere," said Edelnilson Hernández.
Flor Molina recalled that abortion-related mother mortality is the third cause of death for local women at present.

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