Colombia’s Senate rejected the constitutional reform Wednesday, proposed by the Conservative Party, that sought to ban all cases of abortion in the country.
The First Commission of the Senate, after various days of deliberation, voted nine-to-seven against the proposal that would make abortion absolutely illegal in Colombia.
The amendment would have altered Colombia’s 1991 constitution, which currently only permits abortions in cases of rape, congenital malformation of the fetus, or when the mother’s life is in danger.
During the debate, U Party Senator Roy Leonardo Barreras said that “abortion is always a sad decision and no Colombian woman wants to abort, but we will not allow people to jail women who are forced to interrupt their pregnancy because they were raped, because their lives are at risk, or because the fetus has a congenital birth defect.”
He explained that “this project is a step back in history and science, and it goes against the vested rights of women, to criminalize not only abortion but contraception, in vitro fertilization, stem cell therapy, or passive euthanasia.“
Voters in opposition to the reform were from the Liberal Party, Polo Democratico, U Party, and Green Party. Those in favor were from the Conservative Party, U Party politicians Juan Carlos Velez, Manuel Enriquez, and PIN Party members Elmer Hurtado and Juan Carlos Rizzetto.