August 2, 2018

The International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC) condemns the threats against Brazilian women’s rights activist, Debora Diniz.

At a moment when Brazil is on the cusp of a historic victory for reproductive rights, with a landmark case before the country’s Supreme Court, the tactics of the anti-choice movement reveal their true motivation is not to protect lives but to control women’s voices and bodies. These attempts at intimidation and threats of violence reflect the lack of substance in the arguments of those who oppose abortion and equality for women.

Abortion is tightly restricted in Brazil, allowed only in cases of rape, danger to the life of the woman, or fetal anencephaly—a condition in which the fetus’ brain and skull do not fully develop. Approximately half a million abortions occur annually in Brazil and complications from clandestine abortions, most common among poor and vulnerable women, may be killing as many as four Brazilians a day.

As the co-founder of ANIS: Institute for Bioethics, professor of law, and IWHC board member, Diniz is a tireless advocate for comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services. Diniz has been a member of the board since 2009 and vice-chair since 2013. IWHC board members serve on a pro-bono basis.

IWHC stands in solidarity with Diniz as a brave and determined defender for women’s rights, board member, and colleague.

Photo: University of Brasilia