Citizen arrested in Madrid for praying in front of an abortion clinic

Country: Spain

Date of incident: May 17, 2023

On May 17, a citizen who was silently praying in front of the Dator abortion clinic in Madrid was arrested by the Spanish national police. The arrest comes as a result of the entry into force of the reform of the Spanish Criminal Code last year, which punishes praying in front of abortion clinics as it considers it 'harassment to women.'

The Spanish political scientist and public figure Alvise Pérez reported on his Telegram channel, together with a picture, that a citizen had been arrested in front of the Dator abortion clinic in Madrid for praying in silence as a consequence of last year's reform to the Criminal Code. Later this day Alvise himself called for a prayer gathering in front of the clinic on Friday, May 19, in protest of the arrest and in support of the arrested citizen under the slogan #RezarNoEsDelito (Praying is not a crime). 

The gathering finally took place and was attended by about a hundred people. During an intervention at the rally, Alvise announced that his legal team would take up the legal defence of the detained citizen, "to the last consequences, even if it is necessary to go to the Constitutional Court." The Spanish National Police, having knowledge of the concentration, brought around 40 agents in armoured vans to prevent people from getting close to the clinic. 

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