Argentina Senate approves bill legalising abortion

Buenos Aires: Argentina’s Senate has passed a law legalising abortion, a victory for the women’s movement that has been fighting for the right for decades.

Under Wednesday’s majority vote, abortion is legalised up to the 14th week of pregnancy, and is also legal after that time in cases of rape or danger to the mother’s life.

The vote was passed with 38 votes in favor, 29 against and one abstention, after a marathon 12-hour session that began late Tuesday.

It was already approved by Argentinas Chamber of Deputies and has the support of President Alberto Fernandez, meaning the Senate vote is its final hurdle.

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Argentine senators debated for hour after hour over legalising abortion, wrangling into the early hours of Wednesday before a vote that marked the culmination of a decades-long fight by women’s groups in Pope Francis’ homeland and have repercussions across a continent where the procedure is largely illegal. 

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