Sara Rogel had been sentenced to 30 years in prison for an abortion-related crime in El Salvador.
Women’s rights defenders have welcomed the release of a woman in El Salvador who has been sentenced to long prison terms for a suspected abortion, in a case that has attracted international attention in South America. strict prohibition of abortion by the nation.
Sara Rogel, 28, was arrested in October 2012 after going to a hospital with bloody injuries caused by what she said was a fall while doing housework.
Then, a 22-year-old student, Rogel was persecuted and sentenced to 30 years in prison for killing his newborn daughter. His sentence was later reduced to 10 years, which would have seen him released in October 2022.
On Monday, she left a women’s prison near Zacatecoluca, about 56 km (35 miles) southeast of the capital San Salvador, where she was joined by members of her family and her lawyer Karla Vaquerano of the rights group of abortion ACDATEE.
“She has been deprived of her liberty for almost nine years, in a sentence we believe she was unjustly given,” Vaquerano said.
Rogel was one of dozens of Salvadoran women incarcerated for abortion-related crimes in the country, who banned abortion in all circumstances, including rape or if the mother’s life is in danger, in 1998.
Women’s rights groups said most of these women come from poor, rural areas and that they have had obstetric emergencies, not abortions.
“Sara has never deserved to be in prison,” said feminist activist Morena Herrera. “While she was mourning the tragic loss of her pregnancy, Sara should have been with her family. Instead, she was unjustly imprisoned for nine years.”
Rogel’s case had attracted international attention and called for action.
“If El Salvador is really serious about its international human rights obligations, this is the opportunity to release Sarita,” said Paula Avila-Guillen, a lawyer who consults Rogel’s legal team. he told Al Jazeera in March.
Avila-Guillen, executive director of Women’s Equality Center, a U.S. organization that supports feminist organizations in Latin America, welcomed the news of Rogel’s release Monday, but said the fight will continue.
“She suffered not only from the loss of her pregnancy, but also from the loss of her freedom. We will not stop fighting until ALL women are free! he wrote.
Sara is free today. After 10 years in prison following a medical emergency during her pregnancy that resulted in a stillbirth. She had to suffer not only with the loss of her pregnancy, but also the loss of her freedom. We won't stop fighting until ALL the women are free! https://t.co/Xfz7fmZt0O
— Paula Avila-Guillen (@pauavilg) June 7, 2021
In recent years some decisions have been reversed, with many women released from prison after serving part of his long sentences.
Rogel’s release comes amid a “green wave” of the abortion rights movement in Latin America.
Needless to say, abortions throughout the region are available on request only in Cuba, Uruguay and elsewhere certain parts of Mexico.