Calm After the Storm, Abortion Boat Sails Without a Hitch

The boat was able to sail out to international waters with three women. Outside the spanish territorial waters the women on board could get a safe, medical abortion by a licensed Dutch gynecologist. The ship sailed with Dutch gynecologist Dr. Gunilla Kleiverda, and Spanish gynecologist Dr. Josep Carbonell.
At the helm of the ship were the captains Myra and Margreet. Three boats filled with press sailed along. In the high sea, the doctors stepped over to the press boats to give some interviews, this way guaranteeing the privacy of the women.

It was a beautiful day, and we were greeted along the way by dolphins leaping alongside the boat. The threats of the anti-choice protesters to block the boat were apparently empty, not one showed up the entire day. That’s okay, we prefer the dolphins for company.
The boat arrived safely in the afternoon, and was greeted by a group of supporters from local organizations. Everybody boarded the boat to welcome them on. As an extra security measure (although happily there was no need), all of the women put on scarves and sunglasses to leave the boat in a group and anonymous.

In the evening, a demonstration in Valencia rallied public support, despite some counter-protests. About 200 people gathered outside the Estació del Nord (North Train Station), rallied by the Lesbianband percussionists. There was an air of celebration following the excitement of the previous day and the successful sailing of the boat, and Dr. Gunilla Kleiverda, leading the dancing.

Now that the campaign is underway, we are finally seeing some positive response from the local press (at least, the local press that isn’t connected to the right –wing groups). For example, the Levante article titled, “Hemos venido a apoyar el derecho de la mujer a decidir”, (“We have come to support the right of the woman to choose”, quoting Rebecca Gompert’s speech at the inauguration ceremony).

GPS International waters
Lesbianband animates Protest, photo by Cedric
Lesbianband animates Protest, photo by Cedric
Press boats
Oración por el derecho al aborto
Prayer for the right to a safe abortion, given out at the evening demonstration
Gunilla, Myra, and Vera read favorable news coverage
photo by Cédric
Gunilla giving interview

Farewell Party

At the last minute goodbye party everybody toasted to free and legal abortion…

Another woman received help from the Women on Waves ship in international waters.

This morning when the crew was preparing to leave for a short sailing trip, a…

Local Activists and Supporters Visit Women on Waves Boat

The Women on Waves boat was open for visits today. We had volunteers from…

Suddenly women start showing up at the ship seeking help

Women are coming to the ship asking for help, after seeing the news coverage.

Valencia welcomes abortion ship.

At the invitation of more than 30 Spanish organizations, the Women on Waves…

Wrestling on the water

After the ship arrived, two small boats tried to pull it away from the quay.

Will the Boat Show Up?

Confusion, rumors, submarines, battles on the high seas, abortion pirates, we…