I am writing writing to confirm the very good news that Ágnes received a pardon from the Hungarian President János Áder on Thursday, which cancelled the 2 year prison sentence she was facing. Ágnes is both delighted andrelieved with this development and her public statement on the matter is included below.
This decision removes a great burden from Ágnes but unfortunately other penalties in important areas remain. Her 10 year work suspension confirmed in January still stands, though it's effective end date now needs to be clarified. She remains guilty as sentenced and must carry a criminal record and deal with the consequences of this in her respective professional and personal lives. She is also obliged to pay the fees incurred by the State Prosecution Service in conducting their case against her.
Ágnes and her Campaign Team will now need some time to digest the implications of her situation post the Presidential Pardon, including any help the international community might be able to provide going forward.
Campaign for Justice for Dr. Ágnes Geréb.
The President of Hungary Dr János Áder has accepted the plea for clemency of the internationally-acclaimed independent midwife/ obstetrician and gynecologist Dr Ágnes Geréb, and cancelled the prison sentence against her.
"I am deeply grateful to all those who have stood by me, who with their actions and encouragement have helped me through this period of trial and hardship" - said the 66-year-old health professional. "This act of clemency is about more than me. It is an acknowledgement of liberty in giving birth. It is a recognition by the State that the rights of women to make decisions about the circumstances of their children’s birth must be acknowledged".
Dr Geréb has made the freedom of childbirth the centre of her life’s work. Part of this work was her contribution to legislation that (now) empowers the autonomy of (Hungarian) women in childbirth.
One result of her four decades of work is that the presence of fathers at childbirth, once forbidden, is now commonplace. More importantly, her work resulted in legislation which legalised homebirth in Hungary. This not only expanded the rights of birthing women, but improved hospital practices as well. Dr Geréb has made a significant and lasting impact on Hungarian society by introducing undisturbed birth and fighting for the rights of women and their babies.