Despite the Marxist Sandinista revolution in 1979, the abortion law from the Somoza period has not been reformed. The law provides full protection for the unborn child and the only exception to save the life of the woman is rigidly controlled.

International pro-abortion organizations have poured millions of dollars into Nicaragua on population control programmes and attempted to liberalise the abortion law, but have been defeated by the Catholic Church, political allies and pro-life groups affiliated to Human Life International.