Uruguay parliament fails to override presidential veto of abortion bill

Uruguay parliament fails to override presidential veto of abortion bill

[JURIST] The Uruguayan Parliament [official site] on Thursday failed to override the presidential veto of a bill that would have decriminalized abortion. In the special meeting of the General Assembly, Uruguayan representatives and senators failed to achieve the requisite three-fifths majority [AFP report] in each house to override a veto [JURIST report] by President Tabare Vazquez [official website; BBC profile]. The bill had passed the Senate [JURIST report] and the Representatives Chamber earlier this month, but did not receive enough votes to overcome the veto. A recent poll [TERRA report, in Spanish] by Factum consultants, made public on Friday, reported that 56 percent of the population was in favor of decriminalizing abortion, and 35 percent were against it. Nine percent declined to answer.

There have been two prior efforts to decriminalize abortion in Uruguay in recent years [MYSU chronology]. With the exception of Cuba, abortion is restricted across Latin American countries [HRW backgrounder], and only a few have passed legislation partially decriminalizing it in some, usually extenuating, circumstances.