We, the Iranian & Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO), are delighted to announce that our campaign to stop proposed amendments to the Serious Crime Bill to criminalise sex selective abortion, which would have endangered women, has succeeded.
Last night, Monday 23 February 2015 MPs voted against the proposed changes MPs voted by 292 to 201.
In the run up to last night’s vote, IKWRO wrote to every MP explaining that the proposed changes to the law would put women victims at greater risk, whilst doing nothing to target the perpetrators who pressurise women into having sex selective abortions.
IKWRO fight patriarchy and all forms of gendercide, including through non-medically motivated sex selective abortions. In order to prevent gendercide, we work to end patriarchy and to change the mind-set of practicing communities that value females less than males.
We opposed the proposed amendments because if passed they would have put vulnerable pregnant women at risk. The changes would have pushed women victims towards unsafe abortions in the UK or abroad. Vital safeguarding opportunities provided by legal, regulated clinics, including the interviewing of every woman alone, so that she can make her own free choice and be provided with the support that she needs to support her choice, would have been lost.
You can read our full statement explaining why we opposed the proposed amendments here.
IKWRO welcome the increased focus that the debate about the proposed legal changes has brought to the issue of sex selective abortion and other forms of gendercide. We support last night’s passing of the alternative amendment, which was backed by 491 MP’s to 2, for a review of the extent of gender selection abortion in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
We call on all MP’s to prioritise the safety of women and girls at risk of violence by reversing funding cuts, including to refuge provision and legal aid, which have disproportionately affected Black Minority Ethnic women.
Diana Nammi, Executive Director of the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO) is available for interview.