by Camilla Prato
Tomorrow September 26 in Republic of San Marino citizens will be asked to decide whether to make abortion legal or not within your state. To hold the referendum, the Union of San Marino Women (Uds), which for 18 years has been demanding a right, which in Italy is a conquest of the last century (1978). It seems anachronistic to say, but in the Republic which is called as the name of a saint, abortion is considered a crime.
The Penal Code of San Marino, which has undergone very few changes since 1865, in fact provides for the articles 153 and 154 “there imprisonment three to six years for every woman who has an abortion and for every person who helps her and who procures the abortion“. Reason why until today – and perhaps no more from tomorrow – San Marino women who decide to become pregnant, have only one choice: do it abroad. Mainly in the hospitals of Emilia Romagna, where – as the Uds president tells the fattoquotidiano.it Karen Pruccoli – “women spend” 1,500 euros to undergo the IVG, plus hotel expenses“.
Come to Andorra and Malta, a San Marino has an abortion considered a crime in all cases: if the pregnancy is a consequence of rape, if the woman risks her life and if the fetus shows serious malformations. A right totally denied which appears less absurd if we look at the recent past of that State, which in terms of rights has always shown a chronic delay: in the Republic of the Titan the divorce law it is in fact approved in 1986, 16 years behind in Italy (1970); while the passive vote to women is recognized in 1974, 28 years later than in our country.
“The real problem is that in the last twenty years, with one small exception lasting three years, the overwhelming majority of governments were conservative and anti-abortion“, Said President Pruccoli in July. “In San Marino we still have the Christian Democrats: ours is a Catholic country, strongly traditionalist and patriarchal. A political terrain which, of course, also had one consequence political under-representation of women, which are, after many battles of the UDS, 33% in Parliament. While only one in 10 women is Secretary of State, a figure comparable to the Italian minister ”.
The Union of San Marino Women has published many roads, before arriving at tomorrow’s appointment: countless Instances of Arengo (requests of interest), two bills of popular initiative, in 2014 and in 2019, and finally in 2020 the collection of 3 thousand signatures to hold the referendum. “The times are not ripe, they are very ripe“, Said the president of the UDS two months ago, who tomorrow is preparing – we hope – to rewrite the history of her Republic.