Isabella Kagele
AP English
03/31/16

Zika Virus abortion controversy
The emergence of Zika virus has revived the controversial debate on the legalization of abortion , especially in the South America. The debate to seek lawmakers to loosen the restricting abortion law is gaining momentum in the face of Zika Virus , which is believed to interfere with the development of the fetus. Irrespective of the determined opposition from the religious authorities in some countries such as Columbia and Brazil, some government official and activists are pressing the executive body to ease the rigid abortion restrictions . A report released by the United Nation (UN) health officials claims that 4 million infections have been reported in both North and South America in 2015 alone (Phillips, Dom, Nick and Julia " Zika Prompts Urgent Debate About Abortion In Latin America") . The UN report is backed by the doctors \' reports that , following the emergence of Zika Virus, cases of back-alley abortions , which are unsafe, are on the rise, especially in the Latin America.
Brazil ha d the highest number of Zika virus infections (about 1.5 million) by the end of 2015 . T he country considers abortion as a crime and the conservative forces in the National Congress are working to make abortion even difficult for the Brazilian women ( Brasileiro " Zika Virus Sparks Abortion Debate in Brazil " ) . This does not flow well with the pro-abortion lobby. The group has written proposals to the country\'s Supreme Court urging for the legislation of abortion in cases where a baby has the microcephaly , a condition related to the Zika virus.
In response, some governments in the Latin America and the opponents of the legalization of abortion are urging women to postpone the pregnancy until a permanent solution is found on the issue of Zika virus (Phillips, Dom, Nick and Julia " Zika Prompts Urgent Debate About Abortion In Latin America ") . The opponents are criticizing the pro-abortion lobby for taking the advantage of the emergence of the Zika virus to liberalize the legislation. They argue that modifying legislation regarding the serious and delicate matter of human life due to a temporary situation such as Zika virus is inappropriate.
The risks of Zika virus are considerably high , especially following the recent findings that Zika virus can be transmitted through sexual contact, urine and saliva besides the infected mosquito bites. The pro-abortion claims that the countries that are hit by the Zika virus have limited availability of contraceptives and in case s where the contraceptives are available, the authorities in the Roman Catholic oppose their use (Phillips, Dom, Nick and Julia "Zika Prompts Urgent Debate About Abortion In Latin America") . It is , therefore, impossible to postpone pregnancy , and more people are being exposed to the risks of the Zika virus. The activists are pushing for women to be allowed to terminate their pregnancies as they will , as long as they have been diagnosed with Zika virus.
The issue of public health is in the tempting moment in the countries that have been hit by the Zika virus. The l e galization of safe abortion is mo re significant in these countries than ever before. Following the projections by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nation s health officials that Brazil could experience 4 million cases of infections by 2016, it is paramount to legalize abortion in order to minimize cases of children born with deformities and the maternal deaths due to unsafe abortions in countries where abortion is legal. Some governments, such as the Brazilian government have already acknowledged the sudden increase in children born with microcephaly. It is high time the abortion restrictions are lifted for the sake of the public safety.

Work Cited
Brasileiro , Adriana. " Zika Virus Sparks Abortion Debate In Brazil ." ABC News . N.p ., 2016. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.
Phillips, Dom, Nick Miroff , and Julia Symmes . " Zika Prompts Urgent Debate About Abortion In Latin America . " Washington Post . N.p ., 2016. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.