Abortion in El Salvador: How to Break People Out of Prison

When Salvadoran women are imprisoned for abortion this activist group fights to free them

By Metzi Rosales Martel

Translated by Elizabeth Navarro

Photographs By Kellys Portillo

Two women with scarves wrapped around their face and neck against a black background

Lux Issue 8 explores international approaches to abortion access. Read more dispatches from Croatia, U.S. prisons, Palestine, and New York City.

Abortion in El Salvador is strictly illegal, and the country has imposed decades-long sentences on women who abort or even miscarry or suffer other obstetric emergencies. As a result, a major focus of Salvadoran feminist organizing has often had to be getting women out of jail.

Alejandra Burgos has been doing this work for the past ten years with the Agrupación Ciudadana por la Despenalización del Aborto (the Citizens Group for the Decriminalization of Abortion). She spoke with Salvadoran journalist Metzi Rosales Martel this summer; as of this interview, her group has helped 72 women gain their freedom and has 22 cases in progress.

This content is for subscribers only. Sign up.

Trouble Logging in? Reset Password.