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Dominican legislators submit new bill aimed at decriminalizing certain abortions

Dominican Republic President danilo-medina

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic _ Legislators in the Dominican Republic tentatively approved a bill Tuesday that would decriminalize abortions if the mother’s life is at risk.

Chamber of Deputies President Abel Martinez pledged that lawmakers would soon submit a separate bill that would decriminalize abortions in cases of rape, incest or fetus malformation.

The announcement comes more than two weeks after President Danilo Medina urged legislators to decriminalize abortions if a woman’s life is at risk or in cases of rape, incest or fetus malformation.

Supporters of Medina’s proposal said they worried that legislators would not approve a separate bill as pledged, or that the process would take several years.

The Senate is expected to vote on the measure in upcoming weeks.

Legislators had approved a previous bill that would have allowed abortions in what it called only a “state of necessity” without providing details or further guidance.

Abortion in the Dominican Republic is currently illegal in all cases.

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