Even women who live in countries where abortion is legal often face obstacles to obtaining safe abortions — thanks, in part, to the United States.

All over the world, pro-choice activists held a day of action on September 28 to promote women’s right to reproductive health. They’re facing a difficult global climate.

Every year 47,000 women die from unsafe abortions — most of them in the 66 countries that ban the procedure outright or the 59 others who limit its application to a strict set of medical circumstances. That’s according to the most recent available data from the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Whether it’s a total ban or laws that make it virtually impossible to obtain an abortion — like in certain states in the U.S. — abortion rights are under attack in every part of the globe.

What A Lack of Choice Looks Like

El Salvador frequently makes international headlines for its ban, which is one of the harshest in the world.

How grim is it? In the small country of 6 million, suicide is far and away the leading cause of death for pregnant women and girls between the ages of 10 and 19 — in fact, it accounts for 57 percent of all deaths in that group. Women suspected of having an abortion, even those who miscarry, can be thrown in jail.


[printable page]