After more than 15 hours of debate, a total of 38 senators voted against the abortion bill while 31 voted in favor, in spite of pressures from a wealthy abortion cabal with powerful backing from the mainstream media.
Outraged by lawmakers' rejection of a bill that would have legalized abortion Wednesday night, women's rights advocates in Argentina clashed with police, who wore riot gear and sprayed tear gas at protesters.
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In Chile, the constitutional Court past year upheld legislation ending the Andean nation's absolute ban on abortions, permitting the procedure when a woman's life is in danger, when a fetus is not viable and in cases of rape.
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Anti-abortion campaigners and clergy waved Argentine flags outside Congress as the result was announced at 3am local time (0600GMT), according to Reuters news agency. Mario Fiad called abortion a "tragedy and said he opposed the legislation, arguing it is unconstitutional and violates global treaties".
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There are at least 350,000 illegal abortions in Argentina every year, the Ministry of Health estimates, though worldwide human rights groups say the number may be higher. Thousands of women, a lot of them poor, are hospitalized each year for complications linked due to unsafe abortions - the main cause of maternal death. We will continue to stand with women in Argentina.
US -based organizations such as Live Action, Human Defense Initiative and the National Right to Life Committee expressed their opposition to the bill as well.
For many of them, the methods used to induce an abortion include using an IV tube with a sharp wire clothes hanger or a knitting needle to try to break the amniotic sac inside womb.
Pope Francis this year had denounced abortion as the "white glove" equivalent of the Nazi-era eugenics program and urged families "to accept the children that God gives them". Amnesty International told Argentine legislators that "the world is watching".
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The vote followed a referendum in Ireland, another traditionally Catholic country, in May that paved the way to legislate for the termination of fetuses. Had the proposal been adopted, Argentina would have become the largest Latin American nation to legalize abortion, after Cuba.