There are 49 countries in the world today where abortion is still completely illegal.
In many more, it is legal only under the narrow pretext of saving a woman’s life, and many other countries have strict regulations relating to abortion that ultimately take away a women's control over their own bodies even in cases of rape or incest.
Women on Waves, a non-profit organisation which sends ships containing medical abortion medication to countries where abortion is illegal, have upgraded their tactics to include the use of drones.
Medical abortion consists of the use of two drugs, Mifepristone, used first and Misoprostol, used second, which causes the uterus to expel its contents, essentially triggering a miscarriage.
The founder of the organisation, Rebecca Gomperts, cites the World Health Organisation, which states:
Mifepristone with misoprostol has been proven highly effective, safe and acceptable for abortions occurring up to nine weeks.
The ships dock in international waters where local laws do not apply, and invite women on where they would be provided medical abortions.
The drone operates on a similar concept, Rebecca said:
With the drone what we do is we fly the pills from one country to another and in both countries it is legal to do it because these regulations have never been made for such an action... so we are using the gaps in the rules that are there.
The first successful drone delivery went from Frankfurt an der Oder in Germany to Słubice in Poland, where abortion is illegal except in cases of rape, deformation and .
As the abortion drone weighs less than five kilograms, is not used for any commercial purposes, will stay within the sight of the person flying it and does not fly in controlled airspace, no authorisation is required under Polish or German law.