Abortion ship heads to Guatemala
23 February 2017
Women on Waves was founded by Dutch abortionist Rebecca Gomperts in 1999.
Women on Waves plans to dock abortion ship in Guatemala.
The Dutch organisation Women on Waves has announced that their "abortion ship" will dock in the harbour of the Puerto San Jose, Guatemala today. The ship is equipped to carry out medical abortions up to 10 weeks gestation. Abortion is only legal in Guatemala when the mother's life is at risk, but Women on Waves plans to circumvent the law by sailing into international waters, 12 miles outside Guatemala.
Women on Waves uses medical abortion (powerful drugs that break down the lining of the womb, then expel the baby) which it describes as "very safe". Read all about medical abortion here.
Abortion a "human right"
The organisation also plans to use the occasion to lobby for abortion to be legalised in Guatemala. They are urging the government to "remove abortion from the penal code" because "abortion is a regular medical procedure and a human right".
Women on Waves' founder, Rebecca Gomberts, said that the Guatemala trip was the first since a 2012 campaign in Morocco, when the Moroccan navy blocked the harbour to prevent the ship from docking.
In past years, a Women on Waves ship has also visited Ireland, Poland, Portugal and Spain, sparking protests in each country from pro-life groups. The group has also flown abortion pills into Poland and Ireland by drone.
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