The case of an 11-year-old girl pregnant by rape reopens the abortion debate in Bolivia

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In Bolivia, the case of a 11-year-old girl pregnant after repeated sexual abuse her stepfather’s father has reopened the debate on abortion in the country, between those who defend the right of the minor to interrupt the pregnancy and those who reject it.

The incident was reported by the Special Force to Fight Violence (Felcv), in the municipality of Yapacaní, in the Santa Cruz region, where the minor lived under the care of whoever was his 61-year-old assailant, since his parents traveled constantly for work reasons.

Currently, the girl is around 21 weeks gestation and she is receiving medical attention in a maternity center in Santa Cruz.

The complaint was filed by the victim’s aunt, after the minor commented to a cousin “that she felt strange movements in her belly.”

According statements of the executive director of the feminist association Casa de la Mujer, Ana Paola García, at first, the mother requested the interruption of the pregnancy by taking advantage of a judgment constitutional of 2014 that establishes that a victim of sexual violence can have an abortion without a court order and regardless of the gestation period in which it is.

Since last Thursday, the Children’s Ombudsman and other organizations managed to manage the permits to interrupt the pregnancy.

However, after a series of statements by organizations and the Catholic Church, which condemned the event, but insisted on continuing the pregnancy, the mother of the minor He decided do not carry out the abortionlocal media reported.

The minor had previously told a medical board that “she doesn’t want to be a mother”Therefore, a first dose of the drug was given to interrupt the pregnancy, explained García.

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For its part, the Catholic Church is committed to supporting the victim and her baby, should the pregnancy continue.

Abortion in Bolivia

Abortion in the South American country is legal “under conditions of crimes of a sexual nature” since 1970, and as of the 2014 constitutional ruling, the interruption is allowed “with a simple photocopy of the complaint” and “with the procedure informed to the victim “, detailed the director of the House of the Woman.

According to figures from the organization, in 2020, they reported 39,999 pregnancies of children under 18 years of age, which means, according to García, that “104 girls get pregnant every day in Bolivia, of which six are under the age of 13 “.

Meanwhile, the aggressor has been stopped and sent to the Montero prison with preventive detention for six months.

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