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> Imelda Cortez has just been released from prison. She was accused of attempted murder under El Salvador's strict abortion laws after she was raped by her stepfather. The 20 year old said she didn't know she was pregnant, and after she gave birth in a toilet last year, she left the baby there.
The newborn survived, but when Cortez was treated at a hospital after giving birth, doctors suspected she had tried to perform an abortion, and she was arrested shortly after. On Monday, she was greeted by cheering relatives and human rights activists who have been demanding her freedom for the past 18 months.
El Salvador has one of the world's most severe laws against abortion. A proposed law to allow abortions in cases of rape or when the mother's life is at risk was shot down by Congress last year. Dozens of women are serving sentences of up to 35 years for aggregated homicide linked to the abortion laws.
But Cortez's lawyer says she hopes her case can set an important precedent. Prosecutors say Cortez's step father has been arrested and is awaiting trial.