Abortion: debate is suspended due to a tie in the Court

Abortion: debate is suspended due to a tie in the Court

During the debate, this Thursday, January 20, the Plenary Chamber of the Constitutional Court was unable to reach a decision on the demands that request the decriminalization of abortion in Colombia.

(See: Constitutional Court stopped, again, aerial spraying with glyphosate).

The room was left in a draw 4-4, after the impediment of magistrate Alejandro Linares was approved, leaving him out of the vote.

The magistrates who voted in favor were three men and one woman: Alberto Rojas, José F. Reyes, Antonio J. Lizarazo and Diana Fajardo. Three women and one man voted against: Cristina Pardo, Paola Meneses, Gloria Ortiz and Jorge Ibañez.

The Just Cause movement who filed one of the lawsuits studied by the Court, applauded the progress of the high court on the decision. However, he asked for speed on the matter.

(What’s more: They declare nullity in the creation of transport operator in Bogotá).


The associate judges will be in charge of defining the issue. For this case, they were chosen Julio Andrés Ossa and Juan Carlos Henao.

However, the debate was suspended while the associate judges study the file of the discussion.


The Court is studying a lawsuit filed in June 2020 by the lawyer Andres Mateo Sanchez and another, from September 2020, from the Just Cause movement made up of multiple social and feminist organizations.

(Also read: ‘We are kidnapped by corruption’: Ingrid Betancourt).

Both have similar arguments in defense of reproductive rights and women’s health, as well as considering the voluntary interruption of pregnancy.

In 2006, the Court decriminalized abortion on three grounds: serious malformation of the fetus incompatible with life, risk to the physical or mental health of the mother or sexual abuse and incest.

Outside of these cases, the IVE is a crime that can punishable by 16 to 54 months in prison.

Since the decriminalization of the three cases, several attempts have been made by different actors to make a final decision on the matter. The file that the associate judges will examine, therefore, has investigations and pronouncements from the academy, experts, social organizations, jurists, religious groups and others.


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