A pro-life demonstration in the Dominican Republic on Sunday voiced opposition to a bill to reform the Criminal Code that would open the door to abortion in the country.
Abortion is illegal in all instances in the Dominican Republic. However, the National Congress is considering an effort to legalize abortion in the cases of rape, incest, and fetal deformity.
Led by Archbishop Francisco Ozoria Acosta of Santiago, pro-life marchers gathered September 9 in front of the National Congress in the country's capital. Under the theme “Let's Save Both Lives,” the demonstration argued against the legalization of abortion, with speakers giving presentations from legal, scientific, and medical perspectives.
While the march was organized by the Catholic Church, large crowds of Evangelical Christians also participated.
The Archdiocese of Santo Domingo explained in a statement that “our obligation is to warn what will happen if abortion on three grounds [of fetal deformity, rape and incest] is approved.”
In other countries where abortion has been legalized on narrow grounds, the archdiocese said, “the culture of death groups demand that unrestricted abortion be approved, maternal mortality does not go down, neither do teen pregnancies.”
After the legalization of abortion, the archdiocese warned, “the rich countries will still be rich and the poor countries will still be poor. Our country would be no exception.”
The legalization of abortion in the Dominican Republic is being heavily promoted by international groups, including Planned Parenthood, Women on Waves, George Soros' Open Society, Human Rights Watch and the United Nations Population Fund.
Other pro-life efforts are also in the works. An annual walk called “A Step for My Family” is planned for November this year. In addition, the CitizenGo international platform has collected more than 7,000 signatures demanding the Dominican Congress “pass without further delay the Criminal Code without the three grounds that seek to legalize abortion.”
This article was originally published by our sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.