Moroccan warships block entrance of Women on Waves ship in the harbor of Smir.

The Moroccan authorities have taken action against the ship of Women on Waves that was due to arrive in the harbor of Smir at 13.00 today. Marina Smir has been completely closed. Warships now block the entrance for the ship of Women on Waves. Despite this obstacle and the presence of intensive Moroccan police security, Women on Waves will not this to prohibit the dissemination about the availability of safe medical abortion for Moroccan women.

The ship will also launch a hotline number 0633234333 where women can get information about safe medical abortion. A medicine called misoprostol, that can be used to induce a safe abortion at home (till 12 weeks of pregnancy) is available in Morocco under the brand name Artotec. Misoprostol is on WHO’s List of Essential Medicines. Unfortunately, most women are not aware of this safe abortion method that requires only 12 tablets of Artotec. The WHO’s recommended method of medical abortion is 4 tablets of misoprostol (200 mcg) administered under the tongue. Up to three repeat doses of 800 μg can be administered at intervals of at least 3 hours, but for no longer than 12 hours.

Women on Waves is currently working on alternative strategy for the ship to reach coastline of Morocco.

Abortion Ship Will Visit Morocco Next Week.

For immediate release: “Abortion Ship Will Visit Morocco Next Week”
MALI ( Alternative Movement for Individual Freedoms ) has invited the Dutch organization Women on Waves to come to Morocco with the abortion ship. The ship can provide women with legal medical abortions under Dutch law after sailing to international waters.

Abortion is illegal and taboo in Morocco, but approximately 600 to 800 women still have an abortion every day. While wealthy women can afford safe abortion access, women of low socio-economic-status must often resort to unsafe methods that can result in morbidity and death. Therefore, access to safe abortion is fundamentally an issue of social justice. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), unsafe abortion methods cause 13% of pregnancy-related deaths.

MALI has invited Women on Waves to support the movement for legalization of abortion. To support legalization of abortion in Morocco, people can sign the petition.

In another press release will be send next Wednesday, October 3 th, the place, date and time of arrival of the ship will be announced.
For more information please call:

MALI- Ibtissame Betty LACHGAR +212610177421
WoW- Rebecca GOMPERTS +31652052561

Women on Waves



Sexual Health Services Worldwide


Women on Waves maintains a list of sexual health services worldwide at:


For almost every country we have listed some family planning, women’s health, and abortion rights organizations.


We would like to keep it up-to-date and accurate.


If you have information about additional services in any countries or corrections to the current listings, please send this information

Thank you!

Dec 12, 2011 12:00 AM EST

Jennie McCormack was arrested for terminating her pregnancy with an abortion pill. The case that could transform the reproduction wars.

The last thing on Jennie Linn McCormack’s mind when she realized she was pregnant was that she might, with a single telephone call, upend the vitriolic national debate on abortion.
All she thought about was how it would be impossible for her to take care of another baby. Surviving, barely, on the $250 of monthly child support for one of her three kids, the unemployed, unmarried 32-year-old also knew she didn’t have the more than $500 she’d need for the two-and-a-half-hour trip from her bare-bones rental in Pocatello, Idaho, to Salt Lake City, the closest city with a clinic willing to terminate a pregnancy. She had no computer, no car, no one to take care of her 2-year-old—and like Idaho, Utah had a waiting period for abortions, which meant she’d have to make two round trips. So early this past January, she made the call that may alter history and turn Jennie McCormack into Jane Roe’s unlikely successor: she asked her sister inMississippi to buy RU-486, the so-called abortion pill, over the Internet and send it to her. The cost: about $200.

“My mind just kept going back to my kids, how there was no way I could do that to them, no way I could make their lives even worse,” says McCormack, a petite blonde, as she nearly sinks between the cushions of her sofa, her eyes rimmed with tears. The man who had impregnated her had just been sent to jail for robbery; she did not feel comfortable reaching out to her mother—Mormon, like almost everyone in southeastern Idaho—for help.

McCormack, who thought she was about 12 weeks along, took the pills (the protocol involves two drugs, mifepristone and misoprostol) the afternoon they arrived. The drugs are FDA-approved only for ending early-stage pregnancies; McCormack had no complications, but the pregnancy turned out to be more advanced than she thought—perhaps between 18 and 21 weeks, experts later speculated—and the size of the fetus scared her. She didn’t know what to do—“I was paralyzed,” she says—so she put it in a box on her porch, and, terrified, called a friend. That friend then called his sister, who reported McCormack to the police.

Although RU-486 is legal and the fetus was not yet “viable” (that is, old enough to live outside the uterus), Idaho has a 1972 law—never before enforced—making it a crime punishable by five years in prison for a woman to induce her own abortion. The day after police arrested McCormack, her mug shot appeared above the fold in the local newspaper. “It’s hard to imagine the humiliation and fear,” says her lawyer, Richard Hearn, who is also a physician.

The case was dropped weeks later due to lack of evidence. Without solid proof, such as the envelope in which the pills came, her confession wasn’t enough to sustain the case. But prosecutors retained the right to re-file charges. In response, Hearn got a federal injunction to prevent any woman from being prosecuted under the state’s anti-abortion statute by the district attorney. He also filed a class-action suit against the state, claiming the statute is unconstitutional. But all that took nine months to play out, and McCormack lurched into depression and became a virtual shut-in.

“You’d have to know the climate here,” says Hearn, “to fully imagine the amount of pressure Jennie is under, how hostile people can be, how isolated she is.” Next week, motions will be heard in federal court to certify the suit as a class action. Last week, the prosecutor filed a motion to have Hearn’s injunction lifted. (The prosecutor’s office did not return calls seeking comment.)

The case has become a huge tangle for both sides of the abortion battle—state laws that put abortion beyond the reach of poor women are clashing with the global reach of the Internet. With Hearn ready to take his case to the Supreme Court, Jennie Linn McCormack may be above the fold for years to come.

“It’s a profoundly important case,” says Arthur Caplan, director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania. “But it’s one that neither the pro-choice nor the pro-life people want to deal with. And that’s what makes it so crucial.”

It’s a bad case for both sides. The fact that McCormack kept a 4-month-old fetus frozen in the winter chill on her back porch is the sort of ghoulish image pro-choice activists try to avoid. For pro-life advocates, supporting her arrest would contradict a longstanding policy of targeting providers while holding women blameless. “It would require a massive change in direction if the anti-abortion movement now supported the criminal prosecution of women directly, which is why McCormack is troubling,” says Cynthia Gorney, a formerWashington Post reporter and the author of Articles of Faith: A Frontline History of the Abortion Wars. “It would violate everything they built the movement on.”

Neither right-to-life groups nor pro-choice organizations like Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America—usually quick to publicize such human stories as ammunition for their cause—have made public statements on McCormack’s case, and numerous calls to spokespeople on both sides of the issues went unreturned.

“McCormack puts them places that complicate the storyline. It’s the new frontier,” says Gorney, now a journalism professor. “Once you remove the providers, you have no one to picket or pressure. Abortifacient drugs and the Internet change the debate forever. ”

Despite the reticence of pro-choice groups to take up McCormack’s cause, it is exactly what they have been warning of for years: as clinics become inaccessible, poor women are more likely to take abortion into their own hands. In the era before Roe v. Wade, that meant back-room abortions; now it conjures images of a lonely woman in a small town at her keyboard Googling “abortion pill.” Hundreds of online merchants will send RU-486 without a prescription, according to Women on Web, an organization that sends the drugs to women in countries where abortion is illegal.

No one knows how many women in the U.S. have gotten the drugs this way, says Daniel Grossman, a physician who is a senior associate at Ibis Reproductive Health, a research and advocacy group in Cambridge, Mass. “[But] if women were not accessing them, these sites would not be proliferating.” Although the number of abortions nationally has dropped slightly in recent years, some 35 percent of American women will have one at some point in their lives.

The proliferation of sites providing the drugs coincides with the pro-life movement’s highly effective protests and attacks on physicians, clinics, and health-care groups that offer abortions. The number of Planned Parenthood affiliates has been cut in half since 1987, to fewer than 100. Almost 90 percent of counties in the U.S. and 98 percent of rural counties have no abortion services. Many clinics in states where local physicians are pressured not to perform abortions now fly in doctors from out of state to provide abortions, says Melanie Zurek, the executive director of the Abortion Access Project, a Boston-based group that offers training and support to doctors and health organizations.

While Medicaid coverage for abortions has long been outlawed, more than a dozen states now restrict private-insurance coverage of abortion. Texas cut funding for clinics that provide birth control, even if they don’t provide abortion services. A South Dakota bill that would have made women wait 72 hours before getting abortions was recently blocked by a federal judge. A bill in Ohio would ban abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks after conception. In November, Mississippi voters narrowly rejected a referendum that would have defined “personhood” at the time of conception, a notion that would have made even certain types of birth control illegal. Legal scholars on both sides agree that such laws wouldn’t survive a constitutional challenge as long as Roe v. Wade stands. Which is precisely why some pro-life groups are championing them: their goal is to provoke challenges that go to the Supreme Court, which will, in their fever dream, strike Roe down.

This is, of course, the pro-choice movement’s greatest fear. Spooked by the recent strong challenge in Congress to federal funding for Planned Parenthood, pro-choicers are wary about mounting legal challenges to state restrictions, for fear those challenges would end up in front of an inhospitable Supreme Court.

For the clinics that remain, the use of abortion drugs, which require no equipment and far less training for physicians than surgical options, has quietly risen. More than 20 percent of all abortions in the U.S. are now “medical” abortions, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research group. The drugs are more than 95 percent effective in ending pregnancies up until seven weeks, according to the FDA, and are considered the best method for ending very early pregnancies.

Later-term abortions like McCormack’s, even those done in a clinic, are the Achilles’ heel of the pro-choice movement. Although only 1 percent of abortions in the U.S. are done after 21 weeks (about 88 percent are performed within 12 weeks), anti-abortion advocates have made such procedures their prime target. Since the Supreme Court in 2007 upheld states’ rights to regulate late-term abortions, more than 35 states now have strengthened their prohibitions on clinics that performed the procedure.

Hearn, McCormack’s lawyer, is less wary about challenging statutes—and undaunted by the lack of public support from either camp. The pro-choice lobby “may not think this is a good time to bring something to the court because it’s so conservative,” he says, “but I say no case is perfect, and if not now, when?”

In addition to his challenge of the Idaho statute criminalizing self-induced abortion, he is targeting the state’s new “fetal pain” law, which is basically a clumsy end-run ban on late-term abortions. (Virtually all research on the subject shows that fetuses cannot distinguish pain until as late as the 30th week of gestation.) Four other states have recently passed similar laws, despite the fact that under Roe, abortions are legal until viability, which is around 25 weeks.

While the arguments fly, McCormack waits quietly in her small, dark apartment. A bedraggled bouquet of silk flowers hangs outside her front door along with a plaque that says “Welcome” in Spanish, French, and German. Even if her suit succeeds, there is no victory for her. She says she has “no friends at all, no one to talk to.” She knows no one who’s had an abortion, or at least no one who will admit it. “My mother, she’s Mormon, you know? She’s a proud person, and this is a terrible thing for her to have to look people in the eye.” After her picture appeared in the paper, McCormack got a part-time job at a dry cleaner, using another name, but people figured out who she was and stopped letting her bag up their clothes, so she quit. On a recent trip to a local state office to apply for aid, she was ignored for hours. “They made it clear what was happening,” she says. “For a while I just sat there, sort of amazed that they were just letting me sit there.” Eventually, she picked up her son and went home.

Even her attempts to bury her fetus have been thwarted. Hearn put in requests to the district attorney to have the remains released from the evidence locker, but no one has responded. “I never wanted to be someone public, to make a point,” McCormack says. “This isn’t a cause for me. I just didn’t know what to do. I did what I thought was right for my kids, that’s all.”

More than 130 people participate in flashmob in Jogjakarta to launch safe abortion hotline.
The hotline can be reached at:
(+62) 087839555100
(+62) 085729295100
(+62) 085325211100

For more press information: (+62)0819889240

Over 130 people participated in a massive flashmob in Jogjakarta supporting access to safe abortion. The action publicized the number of the Samsara, the Safe Abortion Hotline, which gives women information on how they can use pills called Misoprostol, which can be bought in the pharmacy, to have a safe abortion by themselves in their homes.
The hotline can be reached at:
(+62) 087839555100
(+62) 085729295100
(+62) 085325211100

Over 2 million abortions are performed in Indonesia every year, and due to legal restrictions, most of these abortions are unsafe and risk the life and health of women. The UN has recently published a special report urging states to take away legal and financial barriers to guarantee women safe abortion services as part of comprehensive reproductive health. Asia regionally has the world’s highest abortion rate, of 25.9 million abortions annually, or over half the world’s abortions, and yet most Asian countries have restrictive abortion laws. About half of Asia’s abortions are unsafe, and unsafe abortion accounts for 13% of maternal mortality. Restricting abortion has been proven not lessen its incidence, but makes it more likely that the procedure be unsafe, often causing health complications or death, the most affected being poor and rural women, who have more barriers to access safer options. Access to Misoprostol and information on its use can drastically reduce maternal mortality associated with unsafe abortion. It has been proven safe and effective and women are capable of managing the process themselves.

The flashmob took place at 10.15 immediately following the opening ceremony of the 6th Asia Pacific Conference on Reproductive and Sexual Health and Rights (APCRSHR) at the Universitas Gajah Mada,Jogjakarta, Indonesia. After freezing in place wearing t-shirts saying, “The right to live, the right to safe abortion”, participants inside the conference moved outside to join a larger group holding a ten meter banner showing the hotline numbers and smaller banners reading “Stand with us”.
The mass action included representatives of Indonesian, Asian, and International NGO’s and many unaffiliated individual participants from Jogjakarta.

For more press information: 0819889240

Resource list:

Misoprostol Hotline:

Women on Waves,

Asia Safe Abortion Partnership (ASAP):

Global Campaign for De-criminalization of Abortion:

International Consortium for Medical Abortion (I.C.M.A.)

UN Human Rights Document Supporting Decriminalization Of Abortion: Right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health

Guttmacher Institute Report: Abortion in Indonesia

Aware Girls was trained by Women on Waves/Women on Web and has launched a safe abortion hotline in Pakistan    

Andrea Huls, who has been interning  at Women on Waves/Women on Web,  has made some videos for you tube to empower women and tell them about misoprostol.

All are in Spanish.

Please feel free to share these links, and put comments on the bottom

Here are the videos 🙂


The government of Ecuador blocked the phone line of the Ecuadorian hotline, where women can get help to get a safe abortion despite its illegality.

But the women already have re-established a new phone number:


Formato Carta de Apoyo Salud Mujeres –

Nos declaramos en rebeldía, seguiremos entregando información con nuestro nuevo número 098301317

Salud Mujeres es una línea gratuita que brinda información a las mujeres sobre cómo pueden realizarse un aborto de forma segura mediante el uso de medicamentos. También informamos acerca de anticoncepción, incluyendo la de emergencia, y sexualidad en general. Nuestra acción se enmarca en la legislación del país, concretamente en el artículo 18 de la Constitución vigente, por lo cual es constitucional y legal.

Trabajamos en defensa de los derechos de las mujeres: a tener acceso a la información, a la salud, a tomar decisiones informadas sobre su vida sexual y reproductiva, a no sufrir discriminación por su sexo, a tener acceso a los avances de la ciencia y la tecnología, a la libertad de expresión, a la libertad de conciencia, a la libertad religiosa, a la privacidad, a no ser sometidas a trato cruel, inhumano y degradante, a decidir el número de hijos e

hijas que quiere tener y el intervalo entre sus nacimientos, a decidir si quiere ser madre o no y, a la vida; derechos todos respaldados en nuestra constitución y en las múltiples convenciones de derechos humanos de las que nuestro país es signatario.

Aclaramos también que nosotras no aconsejamos, no obligamos, ni inducimos a ninguna mujer a tomar ninguna decisión, pues uno de nuestros principios fundamentales es el reconocimiento a la capacidad e inteligencia que tenemos todas mujeres para tomar decisiones sobre nuestras vidas y nuestra reproducción. Nuestro trabajo se encuentra comprometido con todas las mujeres que requieran la información que se da a través de nuestra línea, es un trabajo voluntario y desinteresado de activistas feministas que luchamos en

contra del sistema patriarcal-capitalista-heterosexista de nuestro país y el mundo. Trabajamos para destruir las limitaciones a las decisiones de las mujeres y para disminuir las muertes de ellas por abortos inseguros.

El día de ayer, Domingo 12 de septiembre de 2010, el número telefónico de Salud Mujeres, 099004545, fue bloqueado por Movistar, por una orden enviada desde la Fiscalía General del Estado Ecuatoriano.

Frente a esta acción, y en uso de nuestros derechos fundamentales

constitucionalmente reconocidos, nos declaramos en resistencia y seguiremos entregando información: el nuevo número de Salud Mujeres es 098301317.

Nos declaramos en desacuerdo con las normas penales que discriminan a las mujeres y violan la constitución, con aquellas que nos obligan a asumir maternidades que no queremos, y con las que intentan callarnos para seguir manteniendo el aborto y la sexualidad de las mujeres en el silencio y el tabú.

Es por esta razón que pedimos apoyo de la gente, organizaciones y colectivos que conocen nuestro trabajo y que también están en desacuerdo con las leyes que criminalizan a las mujeres, necesitamos apoyo para difundir nuestro nuevo número y para evitar que estas acciones de persecución continúen. Envíennos su apoyo o adhiéranse al formato adjunto, llenándolo y enviándolo a

Agradecemos su colaboración.

Salud Mujeres


On 18 september 2010, Swiss fundamentalist anti-abortion groups (all of them rather small) will hold a manifestation with an oecumenical mass (evangelical and catholic) on the streets of Zürich, “March for Life”, similar to the march which will be hold in Berlin, Germany, on the same date.

No church was willing to host them for the mass. That why they will celebrate it on a public square.

The sponsors are:

Arbeitsgruppe Jugend & Familie (youth and family, grouping traditional families with 3 or more children) Christen für die Wahrheit christians for truth EDU Schweiz evangelical political party (very small) Familienlobby Schweiz very conservative lobbying group Human Life International Ja zum Leben yes to life, this is the only group of any numerical importance. Pro Life an organisation organizing collective health insurance for its members (who have to declare that they will never have an abortion) Zeitschriften ‘ethos’ und ‘factum’ conservative christian journals Zukunft CH, fundamentalist political pressure group (no significance)

A Swiss parliamentarian of the right-wing “Swiss peoples party” (Schweizerische Volkspartei, ) will be the main speaker. This party, although being conservative and cherishing the traditional family model, is very much divided on the abortion question.

Up to now they have only received 872 signatures to their manifesto.

Bioethics Committee of the Swiss Bishops’ Conference

The Committee has a consultative status with the Bishops’ conference on questions of reproduction, genetic engeneering, stem cell research etc.

Among the 11 members there are at least 3 leading members of Human Life International (Swiss section). One of them is presiding the Committee.

Only 1 female member.

Women on Waves has established safe abortion hotlines in 4 countries in Latin America.

(desde Junio 2008)
(593) 099004545

(desde Mayo 2009)
Aborto Seguro

(desde Julio 2009)
“Aborto: Más Información, Menos Riesgos”
(011) 156 664 7070

(desde Mayo 2010)
Linea Aborto Informacion Segura
(01) 945 411 951

A great video about the hotline in Argentina (spanish only) is here
América Latina