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Anti-abortion supporters in Argentina celebrated on Wednesday night after the Senate rejected a bill that would have legalised terminations in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy.

Prior to the vote, Argentine President Mauricio Macri said he would sign the bill if it passed, despite personally disagreeing with abortion. The Bill would have expanded abortion rights to allow women to end a pregnancy by choice within the first 14 weeks.

Argentina now allows the procedure only in cases of rape or risks to a woman's health. Chile had been the last country in South America to ban abortion in all cases, though several nations in Central America still have absolute prohibitions. "It is an unforgiveable step backwards", said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

"Fortunately, women are gaining spaces and we've been learning from those spaces that they're demanding", said Gustavo Bayley, a tattoo artist wearing the abortion movement's green handkerchief on his arm.

Ousset said while working at the hospital she realized there was another reality: abortions were being performed in private clinics with better conditions.

Small groups rallied in other countries across the region to voice support for the Argentine abortion measure, including in Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru.

Despite the setback, campaigners still believe that Argentina will have legalise abortion eventually.

"It will happen because that's the world - to increase rights and this is one of the fundamental rights that is still not available to women in Latin America", Szusterman said. Legislation legalizing abortion failed to pass in Argentina's Senate on Thursday.

Tensions ran high during the legislative debate - which lasted well into the morning - with some members of the lower chamber being barred from the Argentine Senate and the vice president hurling insults at a senator.

The Canadian novelist herself has repeatedly waded into Argentina's abortion debate in support of the bill. Pope Francis, who was born in Argentina, has yet to publicly comment on the law that was rejected yesterday.

Despite the strict abortion ban, hundreds of thousands of women in Argentina are still having abortions. According to the Guardian, an estimated 3,000 Argentine women have died as a result of illegal abortions since 1983, and between 45,000 and 60,000 women are hospitalized annually as a result of complications from illegal abortions. Thousands of women, majority poor, are hospitalized each year for complications linked due to unsafe abortions - the main cause of maternal death.

In testimony before Congress, Duro emphasized that "legal abortion also kills", adding that it doesn't solve maternal mortality.

In 2016, DCleaks.com released documents from Open Society Foundations (OSF) revealing Soros funding of the abortion front group International Women's Health Coalition (IWHC) through his Women's Rights Program (WRP), which has been working in Europe, Africa, Latin America, and Asia.

The so-called "green wave" protests that have gained traction in recent months grew out of Argentina's #NiUnaMenos, or "not one less", movement against gender-based violence.


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