Ethiopians Seeking Birth Control: Caught Between Orthodox Church And State

Ethiopians Seeking Birth Control: Caught Between Orthodox Church And State Ethiopians Seeking Birth Control

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia — Her head draped with thin white fabric in the Ethiopian Orthodox tradition, Konjit walked to the stately entrance to the Holy Trinity Cathedral. But the soft-spoken 26-year-old did not go inside to pray because of her "sin." Days before she had had an abortion; she had become pregnant after her birth control failed.

Like many women in Ethiopia, Konjit felt caught between two powerful forces when making decisions about reproductive health: the church and the state {note: we are using only her first name to protect her privacy].

The Ethiopian Orthodox church, established in the 4th century, officially prohibits any form of contraception that interferes with a woman's hormones including pills, implants, intrauterine devices, and shots. So the implant she got that week is definitely not sanctioned.

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Ethiopian News, Ethiopians Seeking Birth Control, Birth Control