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Public Forum on 1838 Abortion Law

17.06.2009

The Common Front on Abortion is holding a public forum on
"The 1838 Abortion Law: What it Means for Today"

FRIDAY 19 JUNE, 5.30 P.M.
Municipal Council Chamber, ROSE-HILL

Jean-Claude Bibi - Barrister, former Attorney General
Kishore Pertab - Barrister for Shabeela Kalla who had an abortion case against her, also member of MMM central committee.
Dr Ram Seegobin - Medical Practitioner, a LALIT leader
Rama Valayden - Attorney General, MR leader
Chair - Touria Prayag, for the Common Front (Fron Komin lor Lavortman)

The Common Front was set up after the death of Marie-Noelle Derby, photographic reporter, who had had to undergo an illegal abortion, as almost all abortions are illegal in Mauritius. LALIT has signed the Common Front's petition for the immediate suspension of the old law.

There is a lot of debate now over the interpretation of the old 1838 law that outlaws abortion, especially since the DPP dropped all charges against Shabeela Kalla. Her lawyer had already requested particulars on how the Prosecution interpreted the law. The Common Front on Abortion has als meanwhile challenged the usual interpretation by the DPP's office, and has called for an immediate suspension of the law. The Minister of Women's Rights held a "consultation" and is preparing to pilot a new law.

The "Fron Komin lor Lavortman" groups together the following organizations:
Soroptimists, Mauritius Family Planning and Welfare Association, Mauritius Alliance of Women, Amnesty International Mauritius, Federation of Parastatal Bodies and Other Unions, Women`s International Association, WIN, Muvman Liberasyon Fam.
As well as individuals, including journalists and members of the National Assembly.