Mexico’s Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of a law in Mexico City that allows abortion up to the twelfth week of pregnancy, in ruling called “historic” by abortion supporters who want the practice legalized throughout the country.
The justices heard arguments for three days from the Mexican Attorney General and the National Commission on Human Rights, who both said the law passed by the Mexico City Legislative Assembly in 2007 was unconstitutional.
On Wednesday it was reported that of the eleven justices, eight supported abortion and established a “majority opinion” that the rights of women should be given priority over the rights of the “unborn conceived.” The official vote on the ruling takes place on Thursday.
The justices in favor of abortion are Genaro Góngora Pimentel, José de Jesús Gudiño Pelayo, Juan Silva Meza, Fernando Franco González Salas, Sergio Valls Hernández, Olga Sánchez Cordero, José Ramón Cossío and Margarita Luna Ramos.
Those who dissented and found that life is protected by the Constitution from the moment of conception were Sergio Aguirre, Mariano Azuela and Guillermo Ortiz.
According to the Mexican daily El Universal, “Azuela was the only one who brought medical and scientific questions to the discussions aimed at defining when life begins.”
“The question was avoided by the ten other justices, who concluded that it was not for the Court to determine when life begins, since it is a question about which there is no agreement throughout the world and is not a legal question,” the paper reported.