12 Jul, 2014 @ 12:00
1 min read

Spain’s anti-abortion bill campaigners hit the big screen

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A COLLECTIVE of nearly 80 female film-makers have made a hard-hitting documentary protesting Spain’s widely-criticised, ‘medieval’ abortion ban.

Yo decido. El tren de la libertad – which translates as ‘I decide. The freedom train’ – opened this week in cinemas, cafes and other venues across Spain.

Creators feel the cause is ‘just and urgent: to ensure that neither in Spain nor in any other country the rights of women to decide freely regarding their bodies and sexuality are pushed back or renegotiated’.

The documentary focuses on a massive demonstration held in Madrid in February, to protest the planned abortion bill – which aims to make voluntary termination less accessible.

Tens of thousands of protestors gathered in Madrid, from all over the world. Many travelled from the north of Spain on a train known as the ‘freedom train’ – hence the film’s title.

Famous writer Rosa Montero is one of many quoted in the documentary: “I have lived this, exactly this, I have gone with people to London and I have gone with people to clandestine abortions here.

“And I have done with a friend to accident and emergency because she was dying from a botched clandestine abortion.”

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s PP government unveiled the first stages of the abortion bill in December.

According to current plans for the bill – which will be voted on later this month – abortion will only be permitted in case of rape, if pregnancy would endanger the health of the mother, or if the foetus is severely malformed.

But opponents argue to bill is a return to the restrictive policies of Franco’s far-right dictatorship, and will put women’s health at serious risk.

Entry to the screenings is free, and it is also available online again free of charge.

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