A leading Brazilian personality in the fight to legalize abortion says she’s not afraid, despite receiving death threats ahead of a Friday hearing on a proposal to legalize abortion.
“I’m on alert but I’m not intimidated because I need to do my work,” University of Brasília anthropology professor Debora Diniz said, Reuters reported Thursday.
The professor is a leading feminist campaigner and had a large hand in pushing legislation seeking to legalize abortion in Brazil. She has been in hiding after receiving threats on Facebook and WhatsApp, an instant message app that allows free communication internationally. (RELATED: Abortion Battle Rages In Brazil. Professor In Hiding After Receiving Death Threats)
“This is exactly the silencing that the hate crowd wants. Fear to silence me,” Diniz said, vowing that she won’t stay silent. She is protected by a government program for at-risk activists, according to Reuters.
Friday’s hearing on a bill proposing the decriminalization of abortion comes at the request of Brazilian Supreme Federal Court Judge Rosa Weber. A number of doctors, government officials, religious organizations and advocacy groups will speak at the hearing. The hearing will resume Monday.
Abortion is illegal in Brazil, except in cases of rape, where the mother’s life is in danger and if the fetus has anencephaly — a condition where the baby is born missing part of the brain and dies shortly thereafter. Women who have abortions face up to three years in prison while doctors who perform abortions can receive four years.
The hearing comes after a Brazilian congressional committee voted in November 2017 to prohibit all abortions in the nation without exception. (RELATED: Thousands Of Brazilians Protest Proposed Abortion Ban [Photos])
Argentina is also considering legalizing abortion until 14 weeks in pregnancy after its lower house of Congress voted June 14 to legalize abortion. Argentina’s Senate will debate whether to pass the legislation on Aug. 8.
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