Chilean President Michelle Bachelet has sent the country's Congress a bill to decriminalize abortion in three types of cases: malformation of a fetus, a pregnancy posing a threat to the life of a woman carrying a fetus, and conception caused by rape. Chile is one of the few countries in the world that prohibits abortion under all circumstances.
The bill is expected to face strong congressional debate; opposition leaders and even some in her party have said they will fight the change.
About 16,500 women are hospitalized each year in Chile due to life-threatening complications of pregnancy or because of malformations of a fetus, according to Bachelet's office. She said about 500 deaths are recorded each year from fetal malformation.
"We are bringing women support in a very painful moment in their lives," stated Bachelet, which was tweeted by the government.
--The Associated Press