Sara Rogel was sentenced to 30 years in prison for abortion-related crimes in El Salvador.
Women’s rights advocates welcomed El Salvador’s release of a woman sentenced to long-term imprisonment on suspicion of abortion. This case has aroused the attention of South Americans in the international community. The state strictly prohibits abortion.
28-year-old Sara Rogel was arrested in the hospital in October 2012 after falling while doing housework at home and causing bleeding injuries.
Then, a 22-year-old student, Rogel, was charged and sentenced to 30 years in prison for killing his unborn daughter. Her sentence was later reduced to 10 years, which would allow her to be released in October 2022.
On Monday, she left the women’s prison near Zacatecoluca, about 56 kilometers (35 miles) southeast of the capital San Salvador. Her family and Karla Vaquerano, an attorney who supports abortion rights organization ACDATEE, joined her.
“She was deprived of her freedom for nearly nine years, and we think this is an unfair sentence,” Vaquilano said.
In 1998, Rodger was one of dozens of Salvadoran women imprisoned for abortion-related crimes in the country. The country prohibits abortion in all circumstances, including rape or when the mother’s life is in danger .
Women’s rights organizations say that most of these women come from poor rural areas and have experienced obstetric emergencies rather than abortions.
“Sarah never deserves to go to jail,” said feminist activist Morena Herrera. “In mourning the death of a heartbreaking pregnancy, Sara should be with her family. Instead, she was unjustly imprisoned for nine years.”
Rogel’s case has attracted international attention and calls for action.
“If El Salvador really takes its international obligations to human rights seriously, this is an opportunity to release Sarita,” said Paula Avila-Guillen, a lawyer who advised Roger’s legal team. Say, Tell Al Jazeera in March.
Avila Gillen, executive director of the Center for Women’s Equality, an American organization that supports Latin American feminist organizations, welcomed the news of Roger’s release on Monday, but said the struggle would continue.
“She will not only endure the pain of losing pregnancy, but also the pain of losing freedom. We will not stop fighting until all women are free!” she 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 rulings have been overturned, and several women have Out of prison After serving part of the long sentence.
Rogel’s release coincided with the “green wave” abortion rights movement in Latin America.
Otherwise, abortions in the entire region can only be done in Cuba, Uruguay and Parts of Mexico.