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Bishops Condemn Abortion As Mexican Supreme Court Takes Up Abortion Case

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Mary Margaret Olohan Social Issues Reporter
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Mexican Catholic bishops spoke out against abortion ahead of a pivotal ruling from the Mexican Supreme Court on abortion access.

Mexico’s Supreme Court of Justice is expected to rule on an abortion case Wednesday regarding a Veracruz law prohibiting abortion except in cases of rape, if the mother’s life is in danger, or if the unborn baby is malformed, Vatican News reports.

“We affirm, according to scientific evidence, that human life begins at the moment of conception,” Bishop José Jesús Herrera Quiñones, the bishop of Nuevo Casa Grandes, said in a July 24 statement on behalf of the Commission for Life of the Mexican Bishops’ Conference, according to Vatican News.

“Abortion provides no support for the woman, who can even become a victim in her mother’s womb,” he added. (RELATED: AP Article ‘Explains’ Latin American Abortion Laws, Doesn’t Include Poll Showing Pro-Life Majorities)

“We urge all Catholics and all citizens,” Herrera said, “to join our efforts to ensure that the dignity of every human being is recognized, even as we face the serious challenges confronting us at this moment in the history of our nation.”

Justice Juan Luis Gonzalez Alcantara Carranca pushed for Mexico’s Supreme Court to uphold a lower court ruling from the state of Veracruz that removes any penalties for abortions during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, according to Catholic Philly.

“The decisions of the woman during the period of the first 12 weeks of pregnancy … are part of the private sphere that is not subject to the sanctioning power of the state,” Gonzalez wrote in his proposal, the publication reports. “The total prohibition on interrupting a pregnancy — via criminal classification — is a barrier that creates discrimination against women in relation to the right to health.”

Mexico City, Cuba and Uruguay are the only places in Latin America where women can obtain on-demand abortions up until 12 weeks, according to the AP. The southern Mexican state of Oaxaca voted to decriminalize abortion as recently as September 2019.

A 2014 Pew Research center study found most Latin Americans were opposed to legal abortion: 95% of those in Paraguay, 92% of those in Guatemala, 89% of those in El Salvador opposed legal abortion.

On the lower end of the spectrum, 67% of those in Mexico, 49% of those in Chile, and 43% of those in Uruguay opposed legal abortion.

“The survey finds that across Latin America, men and women are about equally likely to oppose legal abortion, as are older and younger adults,” Pew Research Center reported.

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