Buenos Aires, July 31th, 2019
Thank you very much, Mr. Secretary, and good afternoon to all.
We very much celebrate this space and hail the declarations delivered by some States during the morning session for the respect to the principles of transversality, integrality and no-regressivity of human rights. Mercosur and its Meeting of High-Level Authorities on Human Rights (RAADH) and Institute on Public Policies on Human Rights (IPPHR) are key spaces in the support of those principles.
Then, we would like to warn about the violations and regressions in the rights of women, girls and people who can become pregnant in our countries:
The lack of access to sexual and reproductive health services, including access to legal abortion, which have a great impact on the physical and psychological integrity of women, as well as becomes a factor that leads to institutional violence – a type of violence exercised or even tolerated by the own state.
And, on the other hand, the criminalization of abortion, which is a violation of human rights, only leads to the threat of imprisonment to those carrying an unwanted pregnancy, pushing them to clandestinity and, in many cases, leads to the death of women, girls, trans people and people who can become pregnant. Despite the overwhelming amount of evidence, some countries insist on adopting regressive policies.
International standards are very clear: women, young women and girls have the right and autonomy to decide over their own bodies. Reforming the norms that penalize abortion and guaranteeing those that legalize the practice are an imperative of human rights.
Mercosur has recognized the Protocol on the Commitment with the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, approved in the city f Asunción (Paraguay), that contains language on universality, indivisibility, interdependence and interrelation between all human rights. State authorities who represent civil society in this space must oblige to the respect of these principles in guaranteeing our human rights, particularly our right to life, health, physical integrity and against discrimination.