Ecuador: abortion will not be decriminalised in the new penal Code

Publié le : 25 October 2013

 Ecuadorean president Rafael Correa, re-elected this year for a third term until 2017, has just witnessed the passing of a new penal code through parliament. On the occasion of this vote, abortion legislation was maintained and has not been relaxed. Having threatened to resign on 10 October (Gènéthique press review on october 14th, 2013) "if members of his parliamentary majority attempted to decriminalise abortion as part of a penal code reform", the Ecuadorean president reaffirmed his stance on this hotly contested issue: "I will never approve the decriminalisation of abortion." Doctors currently face a six-year prison sentence. Under the new penal code, this will be extended to 16 years if the patient dies. 

Furthermore, the new Code provides sanctions for any "bad practices or poor decisions on the part of the doctor" resulting in the death of a patient. Thus a doctor can spend up to five years in prison, have his/her licence revoked and be forced to resit examinations in order to be reinstated.  

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